After nearly four years, a settlement has been reached in connection with a deadly 2012 blast at an offshore Louisiana platform.
According to the AP, a trial that involved 10 lawsuits tied to the blast ended just a week into the proceedings after a settlement was reached.
Parties involved in the settlement included relatives of the workers killed in the accident, injured workers and companies that were working for Black Elk, the AP said.
Details about the settlement have not been disclosed.
The accident occurred during welding work at a Gulf of Mexico oil production platform operated by Black Elk in the West Delta 32 Block in offshore Louisiana.
Three people were killed and several others were injured.
A third-party investigation commissioned by Black Elk concluded that “contractors failed to follow standard safety practices” while welding a pipeline.
Last November, the U.S. Justice Department charged three firms and three individuals for their involvement in the accident.
The DOJ charged Black Elk Energy Offshore Operations and Grand Isle Shipyards with three counts of involuntary manslaughter, eight counts of failing to follow proper safety practices under the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA) and one count of violating the Clean Water Act.
Wood Group PSN, Don Moss, 46 of Texas, Curtis Dantin, 50 of Louisiana, and Christopher Srubar, 40 of Louisiana, were each charged with felony violations of OCSLA and the Clean Water Act.
A 2013 report from the U.S. Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement identified a number of specific safety failures including: no hazard identification; conducting “hot work” without taking required safety precautions; failure to isolate hydrocarbons inside an oil tank; ineffective communication among contractors; and a climate in which workers feared retaliation if they raised safety concerns.
The BSEE also concluded that “regulations were not followed” and said it would pursue enforcement actions.
According to the Houston Chronicle, a trial for the criminal charges, including the involuntary manslaughter charges brought against Black Elk and Grand Isle Shipyards, is scheduled to begin in January.
Both companies have pleaded not guilty.