BP Official Quit Over Safety Months Before Spill

Kevin Lacy didn't think company was committed to safety: lawsuit
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 15, 2011 4:27 AM CST
This April 21, 2010 file photo, the Deepwater Horizon oil rig burning after an explosion in the Gulf of Mexico, off the southeast tip of Louisiana.   (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)

(Newser) – An engineer who had been recruited to join BP in 2007 to improve its drilling policies and protocols resigned over safety disagreements a few months before the Deepwater Horizon exploded, according to a lawsuit related to the spill. Kevin Lacy, BP's senior vice president for drilling operations in the Gulf of Mexico, resigned in December 2009 over concerns that BP was not committed to improving safety, the AP reports. The rig blew up the following April 20.

Lacy's departure "coincided with other additional and extensive reshuffling of personnel in the BP Gulf of Mexico drilling unit," according to documents filed last night. By the time the rig exploded, four of the five senior officials in BP's Gulf of Mexico region had only been on the job a few months, the lawsuit attests. The claims are part of a lawsuit filed last year, but since amended, that claims BP hid information and made misleading or untrue statements about its safety practices in an effort to inflate its stock price before the oil spill.

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