Reporting from Atlanta — The massive civil lawsuit stemming from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, originally scheduled to go to trial Monday in New Orleans, has been postponed for one week to give oil giant BP and lawyers for more than 120,000 plaintiffs time to continue settlement talks.
The postponement of the start of the trial to March 5 was announced in a joint statement Sunday from BP, which was in charge of the drilling project, and the group of plaintiffs' attorneys known as the Plaintiffs' Steering Committee, or PSC.
"BP and the PSC are working to reach agreement to fairly compensate people and businesses affected by the Deepwater Horizon accident and oil spill," the statement read. It added: "There can be no assurance that these discussions will lead to a settlement agreement. A further announcement will be made as appropriate."
That settlement talks were ongoing was no surprise. BP Chief Executive Robert Dudley said earlier this month that the company would like to settle "if we can do so on fair and reasonable terms."