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Houston — Tanker Collision Causes Thousands of Gallons of Gas Product Leaking into Houston Ship Channel

Posted on Sunday, May 12th, 2019 at 7:55 am by Williams Hart   

At approximately 3:30 p.m. on Friday, May 10, 2019, a collision between a massive tanker and two oil barges has resulted in about tens of thousands of gallons of a gasoline product leaking into the Houston Ship Channel.

According to initial reports, a 755-foot tanker collided with a tug that was pushing two barges filled with 25,000 gallons of reformate each. This occurred in the Houston Ship Channel, near Bayport, Texas. One of the barges was capsized, and it is still unclear how much of the product was leaked into the water.

Reformate is a refined product that is blended with gasoline to boost octane to achieve levels needed for commercial sales. It is an extremely flammable liquid and vapor, and it can be fatal once it’s swallowed. It’s also toxic to marine life.

Crews have now deployed roughly 3,600 feet of boom to prevent the material from spreading farther into the water.

The Galveston County Health District reported that its main priority is the health and safety of the community. A gasoline smell does not necessarily mean there is a health hazard, but nonetheless, air monitoring is still conducted.

Officials believe that it is important for residents to know how to spot symptoms of a possible health hazard caused by this accident. These symptoms may include coughing, difficulty breathing, headaches, nausea, and dizziness. Burning, irritation and redness of the skin, eyes, nose, and throat are other possible symptoms.

The elderly, children, pregnant women, and those with respiratory issues or weakened immune systems may be especially affected.

The United States Coast Guard will be investigating this accident further.

It is unfortunate to hear of this accident. Alas, this is not the first time that it happens. Oil spills caused by damaged tankers, pipelines, or offshore oil rigs almost always result in immediate and long-term environmental damage that can last for decades. This is because they coat everything they touch and become long-term but unwelcome parts of every ecosystem they enter. As a result, they can have damaging consequences to the marine life in particular, killing or contaminating fish and smaller organisms. Oil spills can indirectly affect humans too, especially if they consume contaminated organisms or have some contact with contaminated water or sand (in the case of beaches).

Oil spills can be as complicated as they are damaging to the victims. Thankfully, there are lawyers who are experts in cases like this. That is why, if you think you are a victim of an effect of an oil spill, or you know someone who is, or you lost a loved one because of this, then please never hesitate in asking help from these lawyers. They will help you in protecting your rights and in getting you the justice that you deserve.

If someone you love was seriously hurt or killed in an accident, you may be unsure of where to turn. The attorneys of Williams Hart have experience helping people through the aftermath of catastrophic accidents, and we can help you too. Contact our law firm at (713) 352-7071 to speak with an experienced lawyer today.

Note: We report on the types of accidents and injuries our law firm has experience handling. Our hearts go out to victims of the accidents described on this blog, and we hope that future accidents, injuries, and deaths can be prevented. These posts are gathered from recent stories in the news. As new developments occur, these stories are often updated. If information contained within this article is false or outdated, please contact us so we can include the new information or make a correction.

Disclaimer: Williams Hart hopes that by showing how often catastrophic accidents occur, we can begin a conversation about how to reduce or prevent them. We sincerely hope that the articles on our blog arm readers with the information needed to avoid being involved in such accidents. Content on this blog should not be construed as legal advice.

Despite tourism increase, the environment still suffers after Gulf oil spill

Posted on Thursday, June 4th, 2015 at 12:37 pm by Williams Hart   

Tourism has increased in the Gulf Coast region, the site of the infamous Gulf of Mexico oil spill in 2010, in the years after the devastating incident; however, there is still a long way to go in repairs to the wildlife, marine life, and other industries that call the region their home, reported on May 25.

A report released in the third week of May, for instance, confirmed the link between the spill and the large die off of the bottlenose dolphin population along the northern Gulf Coast. Oil can still be found on the sea floor and in spots along Louisiana’s coast.

As a related aside, attorneys for business and personal damages claimants have recently announced an agreement to a $211 million settlement with Transocean Ltd., the owner of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig, whose failure caused the explosion of BP’s Macondo well.

Our attorneys at Williams Hart are committed to helping people who have been affected by the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Contact us today by calling (713) 352-7071 if you need help filing a claim.

LA company begins drilling near site of 2010 BP oil blast

Posted on Tuesday, May 19th, 2015 at 12:21 pm by Williams Hart   

Drilling has begun anew just 3 miles from the site of the Macondo well explosion in 2010 that caused significant environmental and economic damage in the Gulf of Mexico, ABC News reported on May 13.

In April, federal regulators approved the plan of Louisiana-based LLOG Exploration Offshore LLC to drill for the same source of oil and natural gas.

BP, its contractors, and federal authorities struggled to contain the blowout that occurred at its Macondo well five years ago, and the full extend of long-term damage remains unknown. The worst-case scenario damage estimate for this new well exceeds the actual damage that occurred from the BP oil well explosion.

The attorneys at Williams Hart know that many people were negatively affected by the Gulf of Mexico oil spill caused by the BP-owned Macondo well explosion in 2010. Fortunately, there are still methods of legal recourse. If you suffered damages from this disaster, call our offices at (713) 352-7071 today to learn more about seeking compensation from those responsible or appealing your rejected claim.

Researchers examine crabs to learn about long-term oil spill effects

Posted on Monday, April 27th, 2015 at 1:01 pm by Williams Hart   

Aside from the death of 11 individuals, and aside from the more than 130 million gallons of oil that spilled into the Gulf of Mexico, the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig additionally caused the deterioration of the Gulf of Mexico seafood industry–especially its crabs, CNN reported on April 21.

Although the industry itself has slowly begun to recover, researchers  at the Florida International University and the University of Louisiana at Lafayette continue to study the crab population to learn more about how species are reacting to the oil. After the oil spill, researchers started noticing various changes with the crab population living within the gulf. For instance, the crabs look different, even possessing deformities that include lesions so massive, they would sever the creatures’ limbs.

The United States gets roughly 40% of its seafood from the Gulf of Mexico.

If you wish to file a claim against BP because your livelihood or personal life was affected by the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, contact our attorneys at Williams Hart by calling our offices today at (713) 352-7071 today.

Oil and gas industry can now respond faster to offshore blowouts

Posted on Friday, April 10th, 2015 at 4:46 pm by Williams Hart   

Marine Well Containment Co. CEO Don Armijo stated that the oil and gas industry now has the capacity to respond faster to offshore oil well blowouts – five years after oil giant British Petroleum caused a massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Armijo noted that his company, for instance, has equipment that can respond to oil spills in up to 10,000 feet of water.

Oil industry members started Marine Well Containment Co., and have spent over $1 billion to develop a well containment system. Armijo also stated, “We are very confident that in a case of an event the system would operate as intended.”

If you have been affected by the Deepwater Horizon BP oil spill, but are still having trouble filing a claim, feel free to consult a member of our legal team at Williams Hart for help by calling our offices today at (713) 352-7071.

BP studies find no long term damage from massive oil spill

Posted on Monday, April 6th, 2015 at 12:05 pm by Williams Hart   

According to BP research, there will be no lasting environmental damage to the Gulf of Mexico in relation to the Macondo well explosion in 2010, the Advocate reported on March 17.

The conclusion reached by the report was that damage peaked directly after the incident, but species in the Gulf will not suffer long-term effects from the oil spill. This report was immediately rejected by several nonprofit organizations and state agencies.

Trustees of the Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Damage Assessment, Remediation, and Restoration Program (DARRP), said BP made “inappropriate as well as premature” conclusions regarding the current status of the Gulf of Mexico.

The health of the gulf could determine the amount of penalties BP will be paying for violations under the Clean Water Act – which could be as high as $13.7 billion – and the natural resources damages it will have to pay following a separate process.

BP is adamant in its insistence that “misinformation persists about the recovery of the gulf.”

Our attorneys at Williams Hart know that many people suffered financial losses in the wake of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. To learn more about pursuing financial compensation from those responsible, call our offices at (713) 352-7071 today.

BP dropped appeal to have oil spill claims administrator removed

Posted on Wednesday, March 18th, 2015 at 12:31 pm by Williams Hart   

London-based oil giant British Petroleum Plc recently dismissed its own appeal to have Lafayette, Louisiana lawyer Patrick Juneau removed as oil spill claims administrator of the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill due to allegations of conflict of interest.

Juneau welcomed this recent development, and was “pleased with BP’s decision to withdraw its [two-year] attempt to remove me as the claims administrator”.

According to legal analysts, it is questionable for BP to have made the appeal to remove Juneau as oil spill claims administrator, given that BP had less than proper standing in the case, and that a negative ruling can limit BP’s ability to make similar appeals in the future.

If you have been affected by the Gulf of Mexico oil spill in 2010, you deserve the right to file a claim for compensation as an affected resident or business. Let our attorneys at Williams Hart help with your cause by dialing (713) 230-2200 or (800) 220-9341 today.

BP contests Barbier’s determination of oil spill size through appeal

Posted on Wednesday, March 4th, 2015 at 10:52 am by Williams Hart   

London-based oil giant BP Plc appealed U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier’s finding that 3.19 million barrels of oil spilled into the Gulf of Mexico in April 2010, making the company liable to pay the U.S. government an estimate of $13.7 billion in penalties under the Clean Water Act, the Insurance Journal reported on February 24.

The appeal was made after Barbier rejected BP’s attempt to lessen the maximum civil fine it is facing in connection with the oil spill. Barbier has yet to make an official decision regarding the total amount of penalties that BP will pay and he has yet to indicate when said decision will be made.

At present, around $42 billion of costs were estimated to be the amount of damage BP incurred for oil spill cleanup, fines and penalties from the government, and compensation for victims. Around 810,000 barrels of oil have already been collected through cleanup efforts.

BP claimed that Barbier’s ruling was “grossly negligent” and that the assertion during the first phase of the trial that BP’s actions led to the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Macondo well was faulty.

Our attorneys at Williams Hart represent those who have suffered damages as the result of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, and we may also be able to fight on your behalf for the funds you need to recover. Call our offices today at (713) 352-7071 for an initial case discussion with a member of our legal team.

Increase in dolphin sickness may be linked to BP oil spill

Posted on Monday, February 23rd, 2015 at 12:03 pm by Williams Hart   

A study published on Wednesday, February 11 in the journal Plos One by a team of marine scientists from across the United States showed that bottlenose dolphins have been dying rapidly in the northern Gulf of Mexico between the years 2010 and 2013 – the period after London-based oil giant BP Plc’s Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded causing a massive oil spill into the gulf.

According to the research, “the location, timing, and magnitude of dolphin stranding trends observed following the [BP] oil spill, particularly statewide for Louisiana, Alabama, and Mississippi, overlap with the location and magnitude of oil during the year following [the] spill.” The research is the most recent study that links the Deepwater Horizon oil spill severe health problems in dolphins, especially those that swim in Louisiana’s Barataria Bay. A similar study funded by BP in 2013 showed that the 4.2 million barrels of oil spilled into the gulf may have caused missing teeth, lung disease, and hormone imbalance in the dolphins within the area.

Marine life has been severely affected by the oil spill, and so has those whose livelihood depends on the gulf. If your livelihood has been affected by the BP oil spill, our attorneys at Williams Hart will work diligently towards the favorable resolution of your BP oil spill claim. Call our offices today at (800) 220-9341.

Andarko argues in court that it should have less penalties

Posted on Wednesday, February 4th, 2015 at 12:43 pm by Williams Hart   

The Woodlands, Texas-based oil and gas exploration company Andarko Petroleum Corp. said it should not be given federal Clean Water Act penalties for its participation in the explosion of the Macondo well in the Gulf of Mexico that led to the massive oil spill in the area in 2010, according to a February 2 article by the Associated Press.

The United States government said Andarko should pay more than $1 billion for its involvement in the spill.

Andarko said it should be given a lower fine, saying it was not directly involved with the Deepwater Horizon oil rig operations, whose explosion caused the death of 11 workers from oil company BP Plc and the spillage of oil into the Gulf of Mexico for 87 days.

Our attorneys at Williams Hart may lend our legal help to those who want to file a BP oil spill claim. Get in touch with us by calling our offices today at (713) 352-7071.

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