Employees of Destroyed Little General Station File Suit

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Employees of Destroyed Little General Station File Suit

GHENT, W.Va. -- Two employees who worked in the Little General gas station here, which exploded in January due to a propane leak, are among a number of individuals who recently filed a $60-million lawsuit against several companies that they blame for the explosion, the West Virginia Record reported.

Patricia Mullins and Leta Farley, the two employees in the suit, along with their husbands, filed the lawsuit July 25 in a Raleigh Circuit Court. Lee Anne Salomon and Kathy Sizemore, co-administrators of the estate of paramedic Craig L. Dorsey, who died in the accident, also are named as plaintiffs, according to the report.

Dorsey was one of four who died Jan. 30 when the station's propane tank exploded and destroyed the Flat Top Little General Store. Five other people were injured.

Mullins, an employee of the c-store, and Farley, employed by the Godfather's Pizza franchise in the store, are being represented by Beckley, W. Va. , attorney Benny Jones. The plaintiffs are claiming that five companies, including Little General and Godfather's Pizza, were negligent by not providing a safe workplace or maintaining the propane tank, according to theWest Virginia Record report.

In addition, the lawsuit argues that the companies violated the law by storing the propane next to the store. Several propane suppliers are also named in the suit, and are accused of carelessness when transferring propane from one tank to another. Further, the suit alleges the defendants failed to evacuate the building once they knew propane had escaped the tank, the report stated.

Farley and Mullins suffered serious injuries to their heads, arms and legs, and incurred more than $300,000 in medical bills, plus lost wages, according to the suit cited by the newspaper.

Defendants include: Appalachian Heating LLC, ThompsonGas Propane Partners LLC, Ferrellgas Inc., BP America Inc., Little General Store Inc. and Godfather's Pizza Inc. Unnamed landowners, distributors and manufacturers of propane and equipment that was used at the store also are included as defendants, the Record stated.