Background Facts – A major spill of hydrocarbons occurred in Mexico and was not timely reported. As a result, contamination had spread and threatened water supplies and farms. Our client had been a contractor working on several wells in the area and faced issues from both the Mexican government and farmers and residents.
Emergency Response Issues – Our client faced regulatory action, private claims, and significant media exposure. The spill needed to be addressed and remediated as efficiently as possible; appropriate responses needed to be made to the government commissions
investigating the spill, and action taken to minimize exposure to private lawsuits. Information needed to be provided to the media regarding the remediation process.
Our Role – We were engaged to assist in-house counsel and compliance personnel in addressing the investigation, remediation, and reporting issues. We met with insurers to obtain the fullest coverage available for the client and worked to obtain full cooperation. We acted
as liaison with investigators for the Mexican government and worked with other contractors and the driller to insure the investigation was handled appropriately, and that remediation issues were minimized.
Outcome – Our prompt engagement with all parties assisted the client in resolving all issues with the Mexican government with no findings of wrongdoing. The client was able to negotiate favorable settlements with the property owners and obtain the fullest amount of insurance coverage available without having to enter protracted negotiation or litigation with its insurers.