Worker pleads guilty to pollution violation in Gulf blast

MarketsAssociated Press

A contract worker has pleaded guilty to violating the federal Clean Water Act in connection with a deadly oil platform explosion off Louisiana's coast.

Don Moss, of Groves Texas, pleaded guilty Thursday.

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Prosecutors said in court documents that Moss was among personnel who failed to ensure conditions were safe for welding on the platform owned by Black Elk Energy Offshore Operations.

A worker welding a pipe on Nov. 16, 2012, ignited oil vapors, causing an explosion and fire that killed three workers and led to a discharge of oil into the Gulf of Mexico.

Houston-based Black Elk was sentenced to pay a $4.2 million fine last year after pleading guilty to violating federal safety and pollution laws.

Moss' sentencing is June 28.