BP “Reckless” and “Negligent,” Says Trial Judge

Trial judge Carl Barbier, who is presiding over the BP oil spill trial, has found that BP is “liable for gross negligence and willful misconduct” in causing the Deepwater Horizon oil well blowout. [Note: the Deepwater Horizon spill and litigation have been the subject of previous LBN reports, including this most recent one.] The blowout spilled millions of gallons of crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico.

Judge Barbier said that BP’s recklessness led to the disaster. He also placed some blame on Transocean, the rig’s owner, and Halliburton, the company that cemented the well. But most of the blame was placed on BP, and that opens the door for billions of dollars in fines for violation of the Clean Water Act.

The judge said that BP ignored obvious warning signs along the way. BP has asked the court for a revised verdict or a new trial.

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