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Lawsuit filed against Consumers Energy in Flint house explosion that killed woman, 4-year-old girl

The lawyer representing the deceased said the woman called to report the odor of gas, but Consumers Energy said there was no leak.

FLINT, Mich. — A $50 million lawsuit has been filed against Consumers Energy after a gas leak caused a Flint home to explode, killing two and damaging multiple nearby homes.

Authorities say a 4-year-old girl and a 55-year-old woman were killed in the explosion on Nov. 22. The woman has been identified as Lisa Rochowiak.

Rochowiak died at a hospital. Fire crews and a police cadaver dog found the child in the rubble of her home.

The girl's father was in critical condition and another person suffered minor injuries. 

“Lisa called Consumers the morning of Nov. 22 to report the odor of gas. A Consumers Energy crew responded and assured her there was no leak," said Attorney Geoffrey Fieger, who took on the case. 

"Later that night her home exploded. It is outrageous that the Consumers Power Company had an opportunity to save two lives, over 20 homes and failed to do so. This is gross negligence."

Consumers Energy responded to the lawsuit with the following statement:

“Consumers Energy is aware of a lawsuit filed following the November house explosion in Flint. Our hearts continue to go out to residents of this community. We have completed field evaluation of our equipment, facilities and service, working alongside law enforcement and other agencies. Our investigation shows there were no leaks or other issues relating to our natural gas system, equipment, or service outside the home. Additionally, Consumers Energy has reviewed internal call logs and vehicle tracking data, all of which confirms that we were not notified of a gas leak in the home or any related issue prior to the incident. Contrary statements in the lawsuit documents are false, and the legal claims are baseless."

The case has been assigned to Genesee County Judge Joseph Farah.

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