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Wrongful death lawsuits filed after Gainesville deadly liquid nitrogen leak

Attorney Matt Cook believes the defendant in this lawsuit, Messer Gas, which is the largest privately-owned industrial gas leader, should be held responsible.

GAINESVILLE, Ga. — Two wrongful death lawsuits have been filed after the tragic liquid nitrogen leak at a food plant that killed six people in Gainesville, and injured even more.

The lawsuits is calling for an industrial gas company to be held accountable for incident that happened on Jan. 28 the Foundation Food Group plant location.

The first lawsuit was filed earlier this week by the spouse of victim Corey Murphy.

11Alive interviewed two attorneys who are representing the plaintiff(s). Attorney Ronny Hulsey said he wants clarity and justice for all the victims.

“Now that we have filed it, we’re going to be able to get in there and get our experts and be able to investigate and determine what’s going on,” he said.

Attorney Matt Cook believes the defendant in this lawsuit, Messer Gas, which is the largest privately-owned industrial gas leader, should be held responsible for what happened on that day.

“There were continuous problems with it up until the very day before the incident, that Messer had been out there,” Cook explained.

RELATED: Agency releases initial details of investigation into deadly Gainesville plant leak

The lawsuit states that back in December, Messer installed a liquid nitrogen system at the location, which apparently led to complaints. Then, according to the lawsuit, Messer allegedly failed to properly inspect or handle the concerns, even after an unsuccessful service repair attempt just a few days before the deadly leak.

11Alive contacted Messer Gas, and the company sent the following statement:

“Messer was notified the morning of Thursday, January 28 of several fatalities at Foundation Food Group (formerly Prime Pak Foods, Inc.) in Gainesville, GA. Our hearts go out to the families of the deceased, and we express our sincere condolences. We are also aware that other employees and rescue personnel received treatment for injuries at local area hospitals. Our thoughts are also with them and we are happy to hear they have all been released from the hospital.

Messer has offered its support to the Foundation Food Group team, is cooperating fully with the investigating authorities from OSHA and CSB that are examining this tragedy and is conducting its own investigation. These investigations are ongoing. We are aware of wrongful death lawsuits that have been filed against Messer. We are reviewing the lawsuits and have no comment at this time.”

RELATED: Activists, lawmakers demand change at meat processing plants nationwide after Gainesville leak

Since the filing of the first lawsuit earlier this week, a second one has been filed on behalf of another victim’s family.

“This helps every family,” attorney Cook said. “Because the information that’s gathered is part of the public record and sometimes the best disinfectant is a little bit of sunshine. And that’s what a lawsuit does,” he said.

The legal team is hoping the lawsuits can get the families closure.

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