HOUSTON, May 13 /PRNewswire/ -- The Buzbee Law Firm, which represents 10 injured rig workers who were aboard the Transocean (NYSE: RIG) Deepwater Horizon when it exploded on April 20, condemned a move today by the company to limit its legal liability.
According to Tony Buzbee, managing partner of The Buzbee Law Firm, "Transocean has accepted more than $430 million in insurance proceeds related to the Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill, but has asked a Houston federal court to limit its liability to only $27 million, citing an arcane law that dates back to the 1800s. This is a despicable action contorts the intent of the Limitation of Liability Act, which allows a vessel owner to limit its liability to the post-accident value of the vessel. This dishonors the families of the 11 men who were lost on April 20, but also those who were injured on the rig, and the many more affected by the oil spill."
Buzbee, who has tried numerous limitation actions, added, "The first step is to challenge the paperwork filed by Transocean today. We will then ask the Court to be allowed to question Transocean executives, including the CEO whose previous claims regarding employee loyalty and rig safety will be severely scrutinized."
The Buzbee Law Firm, which represents a Halliburton cementing hand who was involved in the cementing job on the Deepwater Horizon, intends to provide testimony that both Transocean and BP officials knew that one of the two pressure tests performed prior to the explosion was abnormal, but work continued on the rig. This evidence, according to Buzbee, should be sufficient to defeat Transocean's effort to limit its liability.