A southwest Arkansas man whose wife and 3-year-old son were killed in a 2010 flood at a campground in western Arkansas is suing the federal government, saying the U.S. Forest Service should have warned campers of the danger.
Adam Jez, 28, of Foreman, filed the lawsuit Wednesday (April 11) in U.S. District Court, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported. In the suit, Jez claims the Albert Pike Campground – now closed – had a documented history of flooding and that Forest Service officials neglected to post signs and take other steps to warn of the danger along the Little Missouri River.
On June 11, 2010, the river left its banks after a thunderstorm stalled over the Ouachita Mountains, which drain into the river. The campground, located in a ravine along the Little Missouri, flooded rapidly. A torrent that was more than 7 feet deep swept away tents, trucks, RVs and cement and asphalt pads.
Jez’s wife, 23-year-old Leslie Jez, and their son Kaden Jez were among the 20 people who died in the flood. Survivors were stranded in trees for hours.
Ashdown attorney Mickey Buchanan, who filed the suit in U.S. District Court in Texarkana on Adam Jez’s behalf, said he hopes the government is willing to settle.
“At this point, we’ve, gathered all the information we can. I think the facts are all there – the government’s investigation and report cites a lot of information. We have filed our claim. We’re waiting for their response and (will) see if we can resolve this,” Buchanan said.