Core sampling to take place at Hideaway Hills in effort to boost class-action litigation
BLACK HAWK, S.D. — Residents in Hideaway Hills seeing progress in their pursuit of a class-action lawsuit, saying the State of South Dakota is responsible for damages incurred as a result of sinkholes, which forced more than a dozen families to abandon their homes.
Attorneys representing the homeowners say supervised drilling will be scheduled in two weeks.
Core sampling had already begun on private property and in the easement area of the mine collapse, but was halted when the Northdale Sanitary District Council raised concerns about drilling in the road.
“Core sampling, along with the drilling is the only way to determine precisely what is going on with the land in Hideaway Hills and why it’s subsiding and collapsing,” says Kathleen Barrow, equity partner with Fox Rothschild LLP.
Barrow and the firm hope the core sampling will solidify their evidence when they present their next motion to the courts within the next month.
That motion – to certify the lawsuit as class action – requires lawyers to prove the homeowners have a common claim before it can move forward.
“Understanding the nature and the scope of the disturbance of soil and the movement of soil at Hideaway Hills is relevant to that inquiry,” Barrow says.
Barrow says residents will be notified of the date and time drilling is scheduled to take place.
Results of the drilling analysis are expected in October.