Mercer v. North Central Service, Inc.Annotate this Case
In this case stemming from a fire that destroyed part of the Old Market area in Omaha the Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court finding that the Metropolitan Utilities District (MUD) was not immune from suit and denying MUD's motion for summary judgment, holding that there was no merit to MUD's assignments of error.
Multiple lawsuits were initiated as a result of the damage caused by the fire. After various settlements, MUD was the only remaining defendant involved in these consolidated appeals. Plaintiffs alleged that MUD failed properly to mark a gas line, failed to timely shut off the gas at the scene of the fire, and failed properly to abandon an old gas line. MUD filed a motion to dismiss in each case, arguing that it was immune from suit on the basis of the discretionary function exception to the Political Subdivisions Tort Claims Act (PSTCA). The district court denied the motion. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that MUD was not immune from suit under the discretionary function exception to the PSTCA.