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Wrongful Death Lawsuit Filed Over Oklahoma Rig Explosion

Oklahoma Corporation Commission
Inspectors and emergency crews surveying damage at Patterson-UTI's rig 219, which exploded and caught fire Jan. 22.

The widow of one of the five men killed in a natural gas rig explosion in January has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the well operator and drilling contractor.

In a lawsuit filed in Pittsburg County, Dianna Waldridge, the widow of 60-year-old Parker Waldridge of Crescent, accuses Red Mountain Energy and Patterson-UTI Energy and two of the companies' subsidiaries of negligence.

The rig was drilling near the town of Quinton, 100 miles south of Tulsa, when it caught fire and exploded on January 23.

Federal authorities are still investigating the cause. Red Mountain Energy could not be reached for comment. Patterson-UTI Energy would not comment on the case, but said it’s committed to preventing a similar accident from happening again.

Joe was a founding reporter for StateImpact Oklahoma (2011-2019) covering the intersection of economic policy, energy and environment, and the residents of the state.
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