Cano Petroleum Responds to Lawsuit Concerning March Fires

Last month, Cano Petroleum Chairman and CEO Jeff Johnson helped Cano's subsidiary, W.O. Operating Company, direct its employees' efforts in response to massive wildfires in the Texas Panhandle. Three weeks later, Johnson is stunned and disappointed that Cano and three of its subsidiaries have been sued by the Burnett Trust, owners of the Four Sixes Ranch.

"We don't understand it. It looks like they want to fight fires with lawsuits," said Johnson. "Our focus has been on protecting the land and the people during this extraordinary drought. Over the past four months, hundreds of grass fires in the Texas Panhandle have been blamed on careless cigarette disposal, fireworks, trash burning, and, even, arson. The claims in this lawsuit are an unbelievable stretch."

Johnson noted the suit was filed only 11 days after the fire started and before any state or federal agency issued a report identifying possible causes of one of the largest wildfires to ever hit the Panhandle.

"The legal blame game has begun, even without the facts," said Johnson. "Presumably, state and federal investigators will also examine the origin of the ten fires at Four Sixes that preceded the March blazes," said Johnson.

The Cano Chairman and CEO said the company and its subsidiaries have spent the past 30 days focusing on "helping things get back to normal" for employees. Production in the Panhandle field is now at 95% of normal operations.

"Texans, especially the folks in the Panhandle, suspect that the real cause of the tragic fires that occurred in March is Mother Nature," said Johnson. "We have been too dry for too long. Litigation that blames some other cause is, quite frankly, a sad situation and a rush to judgment."

Johnson said the company is deeply concerned about its employees and all those affected by the fires and current conditions in the Texas Panhandle.

"Our people are back to work, and we are assisting our industry's workers so they, too, can return to their livelihood," said Johnson.

Cano Petroleum Inc. is an independent Texas-based energy producer with properties in the mid-continent region of the United States. Led by an experienced management team, Cano's primary focus is on increasing domestic production from proven onshore fields using secondary and enhanced recovery methods. Cano trades on the American Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol CFW.

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