Man blames Appalachian Power Company for tree damage

By The West Virginia Record | Sep 13, 2017

WILLIAMSON – A man is suing Appalachian Power Company after he claims it failed to clear multiple trees that fell and caused him damages.

WILLIAMSON – A man is suing Appalachian Power Company after he claims it failed to clear multiple trees that fell and caused him damages.

Appalachian Power Company owned and maintained a certain right-of-way easement containing utility poles, cables and lines that is adjacent to the real estate owned by Benny Sawyers, according to a complaint filed Aug. 21 in Mingo Circuit Court.

Sawyers claims the defendant was responsible for liable for making sure its right-of-way was maintained in a reasonably safe manner so as not to harm the plaintiff or his property.

The defendant negligently failed to keep its right-of-way clear of hazards, which was the direct and proximate cause of Sawyers’ damages, according to the suit.

Sawyers claims he called the defendant multiple times and gave them notice that trees in the area of the right-of-way were not being maintained properly and were in an unsafe condition in regard to the utility poles, cables and lines maintained by the defendant.

The defendant knew that the trees were in a dangerous condition because they had sent representatives out to inspect the condition of the trees, according to the suit.

Sawyers claims the defendant’s representatives cut one of the trees down in the right-of-way, but negligently failed to remove the other trees that created a risk of harm to his property.

On March 1, the trees fell on the utility poles, cables and lines, causing them to collapse and the plaintiff was harmed in the form of monetary loss, aggravation and annoyance, according to the suit.

Sawyers claims the defendant’s negligence interfered with his use and enjoyment of his property.

The defendant’s negligence caused Sawyers to suffer damages not in excess of $75,000, according to the suit.

Sawyers is seeking compensatory damages. He is being represented by Greg K. Smith of the Law Office of Greg K. Smith.

The case is assigned to Circuit Judge Miki Thompson.

Mingo Circuit Court case number: 17-C-145

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