Deposition of former BP CEO reveals new insensitivity to rig explosion

Alec Jacobs Contributor
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Former BP CEO Tony Hayward is back in the news again and is being accused of even more insensitivity toward the victims of the 2010 BP oil spill.

Hayward first came under fire for a series of public relations gaffes after a BP oil rig, Deepwater Horizon, exploded in the Gulf of Mexico in April of last year. (Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s accuser continues to face credibility issues)

The explosion killed eleven people, but a series of Hayward’s statements and actions gave the impression that he cared little about those who died in the accident. Hayward was accused of attempting to stop photographers from taking pictures of the environmental devastation the explosion caused, and was quoted as telling a reporter that there was “no one who wants this thing over more than I do…I’d like my life back.” In June 2010, as cleanup efforts were still ongoing, Hayward took in a boat race on a day off, sparking more outrage at him and at the company.

Now, The Daily has obtained an exclusive videotaped deposition of Hayward that buttresses the already not-so-nice image of the former BP CEO.

In the deposition, Hayward is asked about the 11 men who died in the explosion. While he says he’s sorry, he admits he can’t remember their names. He only gets one name right: Karl Kleppinger.

The deposition also produced a legal pleading filed by BP referring to those 11 victims as “callous, indifferent and grossly negligent in causing this explosion.” Hayward, however, wasn’t responsible for that pleading. It was filed in April 2011 on the one-year anniversary of the accident, after Hayward had already left the company.

The plaintiffs’ attorney accuses Hayward of lying in his testimony to Congress, when he said the company was conducting a “full and complete investigation.” Hayward denies lying, but admits he never read the Presidential Commission’s report on the oil spill, which found that “most of the mistakes and oversights…can be traced back to a single over-arching failure, a failure of management.”