Over the past five weeks, the well at the former site of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig has pumped thousands of barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico. Experts estimate that somewhere between 18 and 39 million gallons have leaked into the Gulf so far, although the exact number is not known. It is the largest oil spill in U.S. history. In comparison, when the Exxon Valdez ran aground in 1989, it spilled only 11 million gallons into Prince William Sound. This may be the most serious ecological disaster in United States history, and we will feel the repercussions for years to come.
Though the Deepwater Horizon Gulf Oil Spill only recently happened, and efforts by BP have yet to fully contain the spill, residents of Louisiana and Florida have already begun to experience severe hardships due to this disaster. Fishermen have lost significant income, as they have been banned from fishing in more than one-fifth of the Gulf of Mexico. Hotels, beach resorts, charter vessels and other industries centered on tourism have felt the force of this oil spill, as many people have either been forced to cancel their travel plans or have done so out of fear. The result has been significant economic damages and loss to individuals and businesses who rely on the once-pristine waters of the Gulf of Mexico for their livelihood.
Although authorities are still investigating the cause of the explosion, some preliminary reports indicate that Transocean Ltd., the owner of the Deepwater Horizon, and BP, which leased the rig, may be responsible. According to a Wall Street Journal audit of federal Mineral Management Service incident reports, since 2008, nearly 75 percent of incidents aboard deep-water oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico that triggered federal investigations into safety and other problems occurred on rigs owned by Transocean. Although some of these incidents did involve problems with blowout preventers – the piece of equipment that appears to have failed at the Deepwater Horizon well – others appear to have been relatively minor infractions.
More disturbing are reports coming from Transocean and BP investigators indicating that they may have been aware of problems with the blowout preventer and pressure abnormalities in the well before the explosion. Federal investigations into the cause of the disaster and whether Transocean or BP knew of problems with the well are currently ongoing.
The foundation of our justice system lies in holding people and companies responsible for their actions. The Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico could and should have been avoided. Residents of Louisiana and Florida along the Gulf Coast have suffered tremendous economic hardships as a result. If you or your family has suffered any kind of loss as a result of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, contact the personal injury and commercial litigation attorneys of Greenberg Stone and Urbano., today. With offices in Miami, Pensacola, Tampa, Boca Raton, Weston and Orlando, our experienced attorneys are standing by to help you recover the compensation you deserve. We offer free consultations and can be reached 24 hours per day.