According to the family’s legal representatives, Houston-based The Buzbee Law Firm and Woodlands-based The Law Office of Matthew J. Mussalli, PC, Kelley’s family alleged that “the battery was improperly heated to extend its life for use in an oilfield downhole-drilling tool and was known to be defective.”

The lawsuit claims “included gross negligence and allegations of missing evidence from the explosion.” A separate federal investigation led to multiple “serious” and other citations against Kelley’s employer for violating federal safety regulations.