The Murphy Oil Spill in the New Orleansâ€™ suburb of Chalmette that occurred in the horrible aftermath of Hurricane Katrina has been called one of the worst environmental disasters in United States history. When Hurricane Katrina battered Louisiana in August 2005, it brought along a storm surge that mowed down everything in its path, including a 250,000 barrel storage tank at the Murphy Oil USA Refinery. The tank, which was about a third full, sent more than 20,000 barrels of oil into flooded Chalmette. An area of at six square miles and 10,000 homes bore the brunt of the horrific spill.
Once the floodwaters from Hurricane Katrina receded, residents of New Orleans and the surrounding area where allowed to return to their homes. Everyone was warned to take precautions when surveying their flood-ravaged homes, but residents of Chalmette were told to be especially careful. Thatâ€™s because black, foul-smelling ooze had swamped much of the area. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) found a multitude of dangerous chemicals present in the muck, including arsenic, benzene and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). All of these are highly toxic and can cause breathing problems, skin rashes, headaches and nausea. In the long-term, chemicals like PAHs and benzene can lead to cancers and birth defects.
Though cleanup started shortly after the flood waters from Hurricane Katrina subsided, surface cleaning cannot be expected to eliminate all of the risks associated with the Murphy spill. It is a certainty that much of the oil leeched into the soil, making its way into the water table. How long oil from the Murphy refinery will continue to be a hazard to residents of Chalmette is not known. If you or a loved one lived or worked in the area surrounding the Murphy Oil USA Refinery spill, you may be entitled to compensation. Please fill out the form at the right for a free case review by a qualified attorney
Parker Waichman LLP provides a free initial legal consultation for victims of oil spill damages. The firm only gets paid if you win compensation. Contact Parker Waichman LLP today to explore the legal remedies available to you. Fill out our online form, or call 1-800-LAW-INFO (1-800-529-4636) to speak to a lawyer at our firm.