Litigation

Class Action Filed On Behalf Of Charter Fishing Industry Affected By Oil Spill

MONTGOMERY, Ala. - Beasley Allen on May 13 filed a class action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Alabama on behalf of Deupree Outdoor Guide Services Inc., individually and on behalf of commercial charter fishing guide businesses affected by the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico (Deupree Outdoor Guide Services, Inc. v. Bp, Plc, et al., No. 1:10cv252, S.D,. Ala.).

This class may include all Alabama residents who own and/or operate commercial charter fishing guide businesses that have suffered or will in the future suffer economic losses and/or damages as a result of the April 20 explosion and sinking of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig.

Defendants named in the suit are BP plc, BP Products North America Inc., BP America Inc., Halliburton Energy Services Inc. and Cameron International Corporation f/k/a Cooper-Cameron Corporation.

"These charter fishing guides depend on recreational and sports fishermen to earn a living," said Beasley Allen attorney Rhon Jones, head of the firm's Environmental Law section. "In addition, the services provided by these guides contribute heavily to the state's economy. Without a healthy marine life and open and accessible fishing areas, their livelihoods are placed in jeopardy."

The oil drilling platform, the Deepwater Horizon, exploded in the Gulf of Mexico on April 20 and sank two days later. The wreckage continues to leak thousands of gallons of oil into the Gulf waters every day. Environmental and economic damages are expected to be unprecedented.

According to the law firm, a 2006 National Marine Fisheries Service report said 6.2 million recreational anglers in the Gulf region spent $2.2 billion on more than 23 million fishing trips in 2006. An estimated 3.2 million recreational anglers took fishing trips in the Gulf of Mexico during 2008. In 2009, travel in Alabama's Gulf Coast Region accounted for 35 percent of the state's tourism revenue, as well as 36 percent of the state's travel-related employment, and generated more than $3 billion in tourism-related expenditures for the state.

Headquartered in Montgomery, Beasley Allen is comprised of 44 attorneys and more than 200 support staff. For more information, visit www.beasleyallen.com.

The plaintiffs are represented by Jones and David B. Byrne III, Jere L. Beasley, John Everett Tomlinson and Joseph Parker Miller of Beasley Allen in Montgomery, Anna Brantley Fry in Montgomery and Christopher D. Boutwell in Greenville, Ala.

Download the complaint.