Denton homeowners sue energy company over fracking sites

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by TODD UNGER

Bio | Email | Follow: @toddWFAA8

WFAA

Posted on March 10, 2014 at 10:44 PM

Updated Monday, Mar 10 at 10:44 PM

DENTON -- A battle that has been brewing for months between an energy company and upset residents of one Denton neighborhood has spilled over into the courts.

More than two dozen families living in and around Meadows at Hickory Creek just south of Denton recently filed a joint lawsuit against EagleRidge Energy.

The Dallas-based company operates a handful of drill sites near the neighborhood. Some of the wells are within a few hundred feet of homes.

Residents say they were forced to take action.

"I don't think any of us set out to be involved in a lawsuit," Malie Bush said. "That wasn't what we set out to do."

But Bush and others tell News 8 that complaints to city leaders fell on deaf ears, and that it has seen no good-faith measures from the company to cut back on noise or smells.

"When it's loud and smelly... It really was a last resort," Bush said.

Another neighbor, Alyse Ogletree, provided News 8 with home video of noisy and bright fracking operations from some weeks ago.

The company said on Monday it couldn't comment at this time. On its website, there are a number of blog entries that try to explain the company's philosophy and approach to responsible drilling.

The city council and EagleRidge are already locked in a legal wrangling over the site. A previous lawsuit by the city was dropped, and now city leaders say they are trying to negotiate with the company to cut back or close the wells.

E-mail tunger@wfaa.com

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