For Immediate Release

Organization Profile: 

Darcey Rakestraw, 202-683-2467; drakestraw (at)

Fitting with Tradition, BP Investigates Itself for Deepwater Horizon Disaster

Statement by Wenonah Hauter, Executive Director, Food & Water Watch

WASHINGTON - “BP’s report released today spares no effort to point fingers at its
contractors for their share of the blame in the accident. But the report
should be placed in the context of BP’s larger safety record.
Since 2006, BP has been subject to at least $142.8 million in fines and
penalties for workplace safety violations in the U.S. alone—including
$87.4 million for allegedly failing to implement workplace safety
improvements under a settlement after the Texas City disaster, and $50
million in criminal fines related to that disaster.

“Perhaps the most relevant finding in an otherwise blame-shifting
report is that the Deepwater Horizon platform did not have up-to-date
records for its blow out preventer—reinforcing the danger of not having
complete and accurate drawings for a platform such as BP Atlantis. In
August of 2008, a BP contractor discovered the company was operating the
Atlantis platform without a large percentage of proper up-to-date and
engineer-approved documentation. More than 6,000 critical documents —
including those for pipelines, flowlines, wellheads and other important
systems — did not have the required engineering documentation.

“The company, in its press release, said it expected ‘a number of the
report’s findings to be considered relevant to the oil industry more
generally and for some of the recommendations to be widely adopted.’

“If that is the case, it’s business as usual with the oil industry
creating the rules. The MMS, now BOEMRE, needs to stop equivocating and
start regulating — beginning by closing down BP Atlantis.”


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