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Elliff v. Texon Drilling Co.

Supreme Court of Texas
210 S.W.2d 558 (Tex. 1948)


Facts

The Elliffs (plaintiffs) owned a producing gas well under their property in Texas. Part of the gas this well had produced was being stored in an underground gas and distillate reservoir shared with a neighbor, Clara Driscoll. Texon Drilling Co. (Texon) (defendant) was engaged in drilling a well on Driscoll’s property, the oil of which shared the reservoir with the Elliffs. One day the Driscoll well blew out and a large amount of gas, distillate, and oil from the shared reservoir blew into the air. In addition, the hole that the Driscoll well created soon expanded and enveloped and destroyed the Elliffs’ well. The Elliffs brought a negligence suit to recover damages for their lost gas and distillate. The lower court found in favor of the Elliffs, but the Texas Court of Civil Appeals reversed. The Supreme Court of Texas granted certiorari.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Folley, J.)

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