12 November 2008

Total's Total Shame

In the present climate, with growing distrust and disgust at the antics of greedy, global mega-corporations, I don't think this kind of scandal is going to go down too well:

Total, one of the world’s largest oil companies, has been accused of hiding behind a “completely ludicrous” legal argument to avoid responsibility for Britain’s biggest peacetime explosion.


Earlier this year, Total admitted in preliminary hearings that the blast was the result of negligence by the supervisor on duty at the time. However, it has only accepted liability for properties within 451 metres of the blast on the grounds that damage to property beyond that could not have been predicted.

Claimants whose properties lay further than 451 metres from the site of the explosion will have to prove that damage to their properties was foreseeable. That includes more than 170 local residents and small businesses.

Mr Gaisman said that Total's argument was legally unprecedented and based on flawed calculations. “Even a child” could have guessed that an explosion of such magnitude would cause damage to properties within several kilometres of the plant, he said.

Now, about that windfall tax....

No comments: