(NaturalNews) The U.S. government has filed a lawsuit against BP and eight other firms involved in Gulf oil drilling for allegedly violating safety regulations. The massive oil spill that took place earlier this year has been dubbed the most heinous environmental disaster in history, and U.S. officials are saying that BP and the other companies involved be held completely responsible for all costs associated with clean-up and restoration.
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder says the companies violated both the Clean Water Act and Oil Pollution Act by failing to follow proper safety procedures and guidelines, and that such violations were directly responsible for the spill which took about three months to finally cap. The U.S. Justice Department also indicated that more defendants could be added to the lawsuit as the investigation continues.
BP responded in a statement saying that it would continue to work with the government to remediate the spill damage. Others like Transocean Offshore Deepwater Drilling Inc., a drilling contractor, combated the allegations saying that it played no role in the disaster and that "[t]he responsibility for hydrocarbons discharged from a well lies solely with its owner and operator."
Interestingly, a BBC News report explains that both Halliburton, the firm responsible for cementing the well just 20 hours before it exploded, and Cameron International, the firm that procured the well equipment, are both missing from the government lawsuit (http://www.naturalnews.com/028693_Gulf_of_Me...). So it is unclear whether or not the lawsuit is actually going after the right companies since it is leaving out two very important ones.
Over 300 lawsuits have already been filed regarding the spill, many from those in the fishing and tourism industries surrounding the Gulf that were decimated following the after-effects of the spill.