4 Mar 2012

BP reaches $7.8 billion deal over Gulf of Mexico spill

4:55 am on 4 March 2012

BP has reached a $US7.8 billion deal with the largest group of plaintiffs suing the company over the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil rig disaster.

It will benefit some 100,000 fishermen, residents and clean-up workers whose livelihoods or health suffered.

In a statement, the company said "the proposed settlement is not an admission of liability by BP".

The rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico in April 2010, killing 11 men and leaking 4 million barrels of oil.

The BBC reports the settlement will not cover other claims by federal and state authorities, and some individual litigants.

BP says it expects the money to come from a $20bn compensation fund it had previously set aside.

BP has so far paid $US7.5 billion in clean-up costs and compensation.