West Penn settles fatal power line case for $105M

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PITTSBURGH (AP) — West Penn Power has agreed to drop its appeal of a $109 million verdict in the death of a woman killed by a falling power line in front of her two young daughters and will pay $105 million instead — as well as inspecting its lines for the kind of dangerous splices that caused the woman’s death in June 2009.

A West Penn spokesman has confirmed the proposed settlement, which was announced Wednesday by Shanin Specter, the Philadelphia attorney representing the family of 39-year-old Carrie Goretzka.

An Allegheny County jury in December found West Penn workers didn’t properly splice a power line over Goretzka’s backyard in Irwin, causing it to fall on her while her daughters and mother-in-law looked on helplessly.

Specter says the settlement is, “West Penn saying the jury got it right.”

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