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Sabine Surveyors sued over alleged negligence in failing to report on barge tank residue

By Robbie Hargett | Sep 10, 2015

A New York transportation company is suing a Texas surveying services company over claims it failed to report on a damaging residue presence within certain cargo tanks.

All American Transport Inc. filed a complaint Aug. 31 in the Eastern District of Louisiana against Sabine Surveyors Ltd., alleging negligence.

The complaint states that the plaintiff sought to purchase a barge with an internal capacity of approximately 30,000 barrels from LeBeouf Bros. Towing, but before purchasing, the plaintiff hired Sabine Surveyors to perform a pre-purchase condition survey of the barge, which Sabine performed on Sept. 12, 2014.

Sabine's resulting survey report concluded that "the vessel's condition was considered to be fair to good overall," according to the complaint.

The plaintiff purchased the barge based on Sabine's favorable survey report, but the complaint alleges that in June, after the barge had been towed to New York, the plaintiff discovered the barge's cargo tanks were coated with a hard, thick residue that had accumulated enough to reduce the tanks' internal capacity.

The complaint alleges that Sabine was negligible in its failure to report on the existence of the residue in the tanks, which has cost the plaintiff more than $300,000 to remove to date, and is expected to cost several hundred thousand dollars more to finish removing.

The plaintiff seeks actual damages, plus attorney fees and court costs. The plaintiff is represented by Edward F. LeBreton III and Philip M. Powell of Fowler Rodriguez in New Orleans.

Eastern District of Louisiana case number 2:15-cv-03971-JTM-MBN

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