Three years ago we prematurely reported that sanity had (as of that point) prevailed in the New Mexico case where firefighters and emergency medical personnel, otherwise uninjured, were seeking to sue El Paso Natural Gas over the emotional trauma of witnessing the disaster scene after a 2000 pipeline explosion. Earlier this month, however, the New Mexico Supreme Court ruled the other way, poking a big hole in the “firefighters’ rule” which traditionally barred recovery by rescuers against those who cause accidents. Chief Justice Edward Chavez wrote that to throw out the emotional-distress suits would be to “reward reckless or intentional acts”. The suits now head to trial. (Stella Davis, “Responders can sue in pipeline explosion”, Carlsbad Current Argus, Dec. 5).