Engineering News

BP Settles Final Civil Cases In Texas City Suit - Attorneys
Friday, August 22, 2008

BP PLC (BP) wrapped up three years of ongoing civil lawsuits on Friday, settling four cases stemming from a March 2005 explosion at the company's Texas City, Texas refinery, according to lawyers representing those injured in the explosion.

Over 4,000 cases were filed, according to lawyers representing plaintiffs in the case. The final four suits were settled Friday. District Court Judge Susan Criss in Galveston, Texas heard the cases in batches, starting a new group of cases every few months. Many of the cases settled shortly before trial, while others were resolved shortly after a trial began.

BP wasn't immediately available for comment on the settlements.

"We are pleased to announce that favorable settlement terms were reached on the four final cases," said Plaintiffs Attorney Brent Coon, of Beaumont, Texas. The terms of these settlements remain confidential.

BP said in early March that it raised its legal reserves for Texas City settlements from $1.6 billion to $2.1 billion. Federal investigators castigated BP's safety and management practices after the March 2005 accident in which 15 workers died and hundreds more reported injuries.

Last fall, BP agreed to plead guilty to a federal environmental crime and pay a $50 million settlement as part of a larger settlement with the U.S. Justice Department that also addressed BP trading and Alaska pipeline compliance issues. The settlement, which has been criticized by Texas City victims' representatives, has been appealed, and returned to federal court.

Source: Dow Jones Newswires

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