Case Studies

Deepwater Horizon Litigation

By: G. Christopher Ritter & Andrew Spingler & Jill Kustner & Dan Martin & Jeremy Young & Jerry Williams! & Michelle Diago

The Deepwater Horizon explosion in April 2010 led to one of the largest environmental catastrophes in history. Two hundred million gallons of crude oil were released into the Gulf of Mexico before the leak was capped after 87 days. By then, the toll of the disaster was astounding: Eleven workers aboard the offshore drilling rig were killed in the initial explosion and another 17 injured. A vast number of bird and marine life was killed or harmed, and a 1,000 mile stretch of Gulf Coast impacted. After years of litigation and $60 billion in cleanup costs, BP was ultimately found responsible for negligence related to its rush to complete the Macondo Well, an action which led to the explosion. As a non-operating partner in the financing of the well, the IMS client Anadarko Petroleum joined in the effort to hold BP accountable for the systems and processes that contributed to the disaster.

Our Role

IMS Consulting & Expert Services partnered with Andarko’s experts and litigation team to develop graphics and animation that taught jurors all aspects of the occurrences that led up to the disaster and that went on during the ensuing investigation. Dozens of complex animations and hundreds of graphics were created with the goal of showing precisely how the explosion occurred, including visuals depicting finite examinations of well drilling, cementing, and testing, detailed analysis of safety culture, and minute-by-minute accounts of temporary abandonment processes.

Results

Anadarko settled with BP for far less than the 25 percent cleanup cost that the contract terms set forth for a nonoperating partner, and it thereby dropped its negligence claim against BP.

Work With Us

Your goal is to provide high-caliber advocacy for your client—IMS helps you achieve that goal.