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Archive for 2010

NEW ORLEANS — Transocean is refusing to honor subpoenas from a federal board that has intervened on behalf of U.S. Chemical Safety Board. A federal board has challenged Transocean’s involvement in monitoring the testing of the blowout preventer that failed to stop the oil spill disaster that blewup the Deepwater Horizon on April 20, 2010 in the Gulf of Mexico.

BP Blowout Preventer - Photo Credit: Ted Jackson, The Times-Picayune

Transocean says that U.S. Chemical Safety Board does not have jurisdiction in the probe, so it doesn’t have a right to the documents and other items it seeks. The federal board, however, says that U.S. Chemical Safety Board does have a right and has intervened to enforce the subpoenas.

Huffington Post – Read Full Story

Published by maritime lawyer Gordon, Elias & Seely, LLP

Associated Press oil spill reporter Harry Weber claims the New York Times story about the “Deepwater Horizon’s Final Hours” published Sunday December 26 is ‘patently false’.

The offshore oil rig Deepwater Horizon exploded in the Gulf of Mexico on April 20, taking the lives of 11 men and unleashing the worst environmental disaster in U.S

Their key assertions that the destruction of the Horizon ‘has escaped intense scrutiny’ and that the final hours are only now possible to piece together are patently false. A dozen different AP staffers as early as May have done numerous spot, enterprise and investigative reconstruct pieces on every element in the Times story, plus many they didn’t focus on.

Poynter.org – Read Full Story

NEW ORLEANS, LA – An investigation into the failure of the blowout preventer (BOP) from the Gulf Oil Spill in 2010 may have been compromised due to a conflict of interest involving a relationship between the investigating firm and employees of companies involved in the incident.

The 300-ton Blowout Preventer, manufactured by Cameron International, sits on a barge in New Orleans under tight security.

Doubt is being raised because a Transocean Ltd. employee was allowed to manipulate some of the equipment on the BOP during the investigation. Transocean is the owner of the Deepwater Horizon, the oil rig involved in the disastrous Gulf coast oil spill which is under investigation. ... Read More

Anadarko was recently named a defendant by the US Department of Justice in the lawsuit filed pertaining to the Deepwater Horizon Gulf oil spill.

Anadarko has a 25% stake in the failed Macondo well that led to the Gulf oil spill in April 2010. The suit also names BP which was the primary operator of the Macondo well, in addition to Mitsui & Co., Triton Asset Leasing, and Transocean, as well as BP’s insurer, QBE Underwriting Ltd. ... Read More

NEW ORLEANS, La. — Transocean has been ordered by a federal judge on Friday to turn over safety records to a government panel investigating the Deepwater Horizon disaster that occurred on April 20, 2010 in the Gulf of Mexico.

Transocean has balked in the past at turning over safety records to the government appointed panel of Coast Guard and industry regulators. ... Read More

NEW ORLEANS, LA — The Justice Department has filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court in New Orleans against BP and eight other companies involved in the Gulf oil spill that followed the blowout of the Deepwater Horizon Macondo well on April 20, 2010. The lawsuit was announced by the Justice Department on Wednesday, December 15, 2010.

A total of 9 companies were named in the lawsuit which the government has filed in order for the defendants to pay for the environmental and economic damage incurred from the Deepwater Horizon disaster. ... Read More

Kenneth Feinberg, the administrator of the BP $20 billion fund, said on Monday, December 13, that Gulf oil spill claimants who want more cash can now get a quick check within two weeks, but they will have to forfeit their right to sue BP or receive any additional payments.

“No more documentation required, no requirement that you add any evidence of damage,” Feinberg said of the new option to receive quick cash. ... Read More

WASHINGTON, DC – An Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“ANPRM”) regarding the Jones Act has recently been withdrawn by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”). The withdrawal of the rulemaking proposal occurred on November 15, 2010 and has to do with the transportation of merchandise and equipment by foreign-flagged vessels engaging in the support of Outer Continental Shelf (“OCS”) activities.

The ANPRM was under review by the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) at the time of its withdrawal. Had the rulemaking proposal not been withdrawn, it would have been published in the Federal Register, as usual. ... Read More

HOUSTON, TX – Lawyers for BP and Transocean objected to persistent questioning from Coast Guard investigator Capt. Hung Nguyen over blame for the Deepwater Horizon disaster that occurred April 20, 2010.

Attorney Tim Johnson, left, and Jerry Canduccci, a Transocean safety manager, look over a document Thursday at Houston investigation hearings December 9, 2010. PHOTO CREDIT: Eric Kayne: For the Houston Chronicle

Nguyen conducted three days of hearings in Houston where he faced repeated challenges from lawyers for the companies and for individual witnesses. ... Read More

British oil company BP is challenging the government estimate of how much oil spilled into the Gulf. The government calculated that 206 million gallons spilled, but BP says the real amount was just half that which would save BP $3 billion in fines.

Matt Gutman from ABC News takes us down to the ocean floor in a submarine ride designed to see what is happening there. ... Read More

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