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In an unusual event, a legal settlement in a high-profile fracking case has been made public because of a computer error. The document, dated Aug. 31, 2018, shows that the gas drilling company Range Resources and other defendants agreed to pay $3 million to three Washington County, Pa., families who alleged that nearby fracking contaminated their properties and made them sick.
The court document was issued under seal but was discovered last week in a public database by a reporter with the public radio program The Allegheny Front and the StateImpact Pennsylvania project. After issuing an injunction, Judge Katherine B. Emery on Tuesday ruled that it could be published. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette is suing to have the entire agreement made public.