Deepwater Horizon: Susquehanna County lawyer remembers trial against BP

UNION DALE -- A movie that opened this weekend nationwide centers around the Deepwater Horizon disaster of 2010.

The drilling rig explosion caused the worst oil spill in U.S. history, leaving 11 people dead and millions of barrels of oil spilling in the Gulf of Mexico for 87 days.

A year later, a trial was set.

Gordon Young, of Union Dale, a now retired lawyer for the Department of Justice, was called into service for the prosecution.

He was part of a group of a dozen or so lawyers, scientists, and engineers that were called the Deepwater team.

"You had to work as many hours as you could basically working six or seven days a week at times," said Young.

Young has read hundreds of depositions and spoke with many witnesses. He has seen the film "Deepwater Horizon" and says the portrayal of all the events leading up to the explosion are accurate.

"The movie really brings to mind not only the horrible natural resources damages that we know occurred but the horrible effect it had on the people out there doing their jobs," said Young.

The court case had two phases. First, attorneys had to figure out who was responsible then determine the amount of damage.In total over 3 million barrels of oil spilled into the Gulf of Mexico costing BP billions of dollars.

In total, over 3 million barrels of oil spilled into the Gulf of Mexico costing BP billions of dollars. Even today, more than six years after the spill there are some lingering effects.

"It will continue for years and years. They are still finding oil in Alaska, and I'm sure they will still find water in the Deepwater Horizon blowout for years to come," Young told Newswatch 16.

Young hopes the movie serves as a wake-up call to the petroleum industry to not take short cuts.

"There are a lot of companies that do a good job with safety, but there are some companies who cut corners and take risks and it costs billions of dollars," said Young.

1 Comment

  • Pepper Johnson Jr.

    didn’t Rusty Fender have one of the solutions for fixing the leak, after Malia Obama said to her father one morning while he was shaving, “daddy, can you plug the hole?” what a precious precious story and top it off with the attorney from Susquehanna County? Wow. Just wow.

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