Case Statistics

Defendant Name: Boyce Hydro Power, LLC; Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes & Energy, The Michigan Department of Natural Resources
Case Number: 2:20-cv-11288
Court: United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan
Practice Area: Local Government
Status:
Date Filed: 05/22/2020

Case Files

Case Overview

FeganScott filed a national class-action suit on behalf of a group of residents and business owners against the operators of the Edenville, Sanford and Secord Dams and three Michigan state agencies for what is described as a cataclysmic set of decisions that led to the breach of the Sanford and Secord dams and the collapse of the Edenville dam, causing homes and businesses to be destroyed.

The suit claims dam owner Boyce Hydro, along with the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes Energy and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, failed to operate, fix, or repair the dams in accordance with the established standard of care, resulting in catastrophic injury and damage to residents and their properties.

Noted in published accounts, the dams’ breach began on May 18 as flood water rose after recent rainfall, forcing thousands of people to evacuate. The lawsuit alleges that the operators and state departments are at fault for the dams’ failure, having ignored warnings from federal regulators and neglected blatant, high-risk issues.

According to the complaint, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) repeatedly warned the operators of the dangers of the 95-year old Edenville Dam, including the risk of catastrophic erosion.

In 2018, the Edenville Dam operator’s license was revoked for failure to address safety issues, putting the dams under the oversight of the state departments.

Residents and business owners who are interested in learning more about this class-action suit are urged to send their contact information to dambreach@feganscott.com.