Transocean Claims It's Not Liable For Sub-Surface Leaks In Gulf Spill

, the world's largest provider of offshore drilling services, says that it cannot be forced to pay fines related to sub-surface leaks in the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill due to an indemnity contract it has with BP
. Transocean asked a federal judge in New Orleans to find that the indemnity provision in the drilling contract requires BP to pay virtually all damages and cleanup costs, according to Bloomberg News. BP, Europe's second-largest oil company, claim's Transcoeans actions in connection with the largest oil spill in U.S. history void the indemnity contract. Transocean was the owner of the Deepwater Horizon rig and BP was the rig's primary operator when the rig exploded in April 2010, killing 11 workers. BP has alleged Transocean shares blame for the disaster and sued the Swiss company in April to try to recover damages. BP contends the drilling company must pay its own share of any damages, Bloomberg reported. Legal proceedings that include hundreds of lawsuits against both companies begin in February 2012. Those proceedings are expected to take years to work through. Last week, the Justice Department ask a federal court in New Orleans to delay ruling on the indemnity provision.

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