7 On Your Side:Oil Companies Dodging Blame For Driveway Damage - KLTV.com-Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

9/17/07-Gregg County (Near Gladewater)

7 On Your Side:Oil Companies Dodging Blame For Driveway Damage

The giant crater stands about a dozen feet wide.  From the ground it's about a 10 foot drop.

Anne and Hodge Holman say tons of equipment weighing tons commuted across this road which is also their driveway.

"You had workover rigs, 18-wheelers, tanks. I mean everything you see in an oil field," says Hodge.  

Before the damage, this section was once a bridge where water from their pond funneled underneath through a concrete spillway.

Back in 2003 that spillway was removed, and the Holman's say the company who owned it at the time filled it will dirt.

Ownership has since changed hands and when the Holmans saw that the earth was about to give they called the lease's current owner Danmark Energy out of White Oak.

"We've been trying to call Danmark since January and trying to tell them it's been washing out to try to repair it before it got to this," says Anne pointing to the empty mass in their driveway.

Hodge adds, "The first person I talked to his name is Larry Luce, he works for Danmark and he  just told me it was my problem. He wasn't dealing with it. If I wanted it fixed I had to fix it."

The Holman's can't even drive up to their own home because of this gaping hole.

So they created a two foot wide wooden plank so they'd be able to get across. Then they have to walk another several yards up the hill to their home.

"We can't get a fire truck in here or ambulance. We can't get any emergency vehicle in here,"  says Anne concerned.

"The house will burn there's no doubt about that. If a fire started the house will burn," Hodge adds.

Even knowing their personal safety is an issue, the Holman's say Danmark Energy and the past owners of this lease are dodging blame, and pointing the finger at each other.

"You talk to anybody in the oil field that's been there a long time, they say that this just don't happen. They all have a better name than this. We just don't leave people hanging we're going to fix it," Hodge says.

All the Holman's want is their driveway the way it was before the spillway was removed, a request they intend on putting up a fight for.

So what does Danmark Energy have to say for themselves?

7 On Your Side contacted the company who claims because the case is in litigation they won't make any comments to the media.

But as far as we know, no lawsuit has been filed to justify that comment.

We also contacted Gregg County Judge Bill Stoudt about the Holman's concern that fire crews or police cannot access their home in an emergency.

Stoudt says there's little the county can do legally, primarily because their driveway is considered private property.

Christine Nelson reporting. cnelson@kltv.com

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