Any hopes that BP would be forced to pay more than the measly $50 million suggested as a settlement to the Texas City explosion case were dashed today by US District Judge Lee Rosenthal.
Victims of the blast, and their relatives, have been fighting to increase the BP penalty, since $50 million is pretty much small change for the petroleum giant. Fifteen people died and dozens more were injured, some severely, in the 2005 blast. Investigations pinned the blame squarely on BP, and as part of the deal the company admitted it didn't follow federal rules that day that could have prevented the blast.
Despite the victims' pleas, Rosenthal formally approved the settlement today in Houston.
Here's more from the Chron, which has been doing a pretty good job following this story.
Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.