Settlement Approved in Fatal Missouri Natural Gas Blast

Relatives of a Columbia couple killed in a 2008 natural gas explosion have finalized their settlement with Ameren Missouri.

The Columbia Missourian reported that a judge approved the settlement during a hearing Monday in Boone County Circuit Court.

Afterward Patricia Sneed read a statement blaming the blast that killed her 87-year-old father, Carl Sneed, and her 85-year-old mother, Merna, on “a lack of overpressure protection in a 29-year-old gas regulator.”

Both were retired professors at the University of Missouri. Carl Sneed taught mechanical engineering; his wife taught home economics.

Patricia Sneed and two of her sisters sued Ameren Missouri claiming the utility failed to monitor a buildup of natural gas under the home.

Ameren Missouri said only that the terms of the settlement are confidential.