BP’s Fatal Errors

1. The Report to the President by the National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling came out January 2011.  ON PAGE 194 it says, “In the meantime, at minimum, long-term monitoring of Deepwater Horizon responders’ health and of community health in the most affected coastal areas is warranted and scientifically important.” “However, the focus on long-term research cannot overshadow the need to provide immediate medical assistance to affected communities”.

2. In 2010, The GuLF study was established to study the long-term health effects of the spill. The study was expected to cost $34 million over five years, but was designed so that it can continue for up to 20 years. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) contributed $10 million to fund the initial phases, and BP contributed an additional $10 million to NIH for this and other projects. The BP funding was made through its Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GRI), a ten-year program to study the effects of the spill.

In January 2020, NOLA.com published an article about the findings of more than 32 peer-reviewed scientific papers. Those papers outline the results of research paid for with grants from the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative, created in May 2010 to dole out $500 million in BP settlement money over 10 years.”

“While GOMRI funded 1,747 peer-reviewed research papers that had been published by September, just 32, or 3%, focused on human health effects, according to the paper, which attempts to assess all 32 of them. The paper noted that just 1% of peer-reviewed papers on oil spills prior to the BP incident dealt with health issues.”

3. In 2014, BP admitted in court that it takes years for cancer to develop years after people come in contact with the spill. “All individuals with exposure-related injuries diagnosed after an April 2012 cutoff date must sue for compensation under contract provisions reserved for latent injuries, such as cancer, which might develop years after someone comes into contact with the spill, BP argued. In yesterday’s ruling, Barbier reluctantly agreed.”

What could have saved Frank?

The National Commission’s Report cautioned BP to avoid missteps but they neglected to follow the investigation’s advice.

BP’s Fatal error #1: In April 2020, the lack of experienced health care professionals in the state caused Gov Edwards to issue a proclamation allowing health care professionals to cross state lines to be proactive in the face of COVID-19.

According to the American Medical Association, there are 90,000 toxic substances in the workplace and the Toxic Substance Act does NOT require them to be proven safe to be marketed. Primary care physicians only study environmental medicine a total of 7 hours over their entire 4 years in medical school. It’s no wonder chemical exposure patients get sent on a medical mystery journey of unnecessary testing and misdiagnosis. Occupational & Environmental Medical Physicians (OEMP) are the experts in this field and should be referred to and consulted by primary care physicians.

BP knew that the cancers would be developing years later but they neglected to notify the Victims and the Primary Care industry on how to be vigilant about health. Had we had the right professionals advising us, Frank could have been alive today, and we could have known:

  1. How to minimize his exposure during the spill
  2. To become a patient of an OEMP to monitor his health and get cautionary advise to avoid our following missteps:
    • Take all fevers and infections seriously.
    • Don’t wait to seek medical treatment.
    • Tell all doctors you worked on the oil spill even though it could have been 8 years previous.
    • Don’t get diagnosed AFTER you have gotten too weak to take treatment.

4.2 BP’s Fatal Error #2: ON PAGE 212 of the National Commission’s Report, it referencing the Mabus Report, also a presidential commission, “Any structure should therefore include a citizens’ advisory council to provide formal advice and a direct line to citizens’ concerns.

Against the advisement of 2 Presidential Commission’s investigative report, BP never established a Citizen’s Advisory Council. Yet they proceeded to establish trusts and grants for hundreds of scientific teams to exclusively study the long-term health affects of the spill, completely ignoring the immediate health affects of its cleanup workers. They fund millions-billions of dollars to provide salaries to a scientific bureaucracy to research, while the cleanup workers develop cancer and die without any advisement from any scientific team on how to minimize developing cancer and death. It is a gross understatement to say that the research on long-term overshadowed the need to provide immediate medical assistance to affected communities.