Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Butler v. Superior Energy Serv. Inc.

United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Lafayette Division

March 22, 2017

MYRON L. BUTLER
v.
SUPERIOR ENERGY SERV., INC., ET AL.

          WHITEHURST MAGISTRATE JUDGE

          MEMORANDUM RULING

          REBECCA F. DOHERTY UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         Pending before this Court is the Motion for Summary Judgment [Doc. 14] filed by defendant/cross-claimant Seacor Liftboats, Inc., which avers "there is no genuine issue of material fact that co-Defendant Superior Energy Services, LLC ["Superior] owes SEACOR Liftboats defense, indemnity, and insurance coverage from the claims of Plaintiff Myron L. Butler." Therefore, Seacor seeks "judgment as a matter of law on its cross claim against Superior Energy Services, LLC." Superior opposes the motion [Doc. 16], and Seacor filed a Motion for Leave to File a Reply Brief (Doc. 17], which is herein GRANTED. Seacor's Motion for Leave to File a Rule 7.4.1 Certificate [Doc. 18] is also GRANTED, as is Superior's Motion for Leave to File a Sur-Reply Brief [Doc. 20]. For the following reasons, Seacor's motion for summary judgment is GRANTED IN PART and DENIED IN PART for the reasons stated below.

         I. Factual and Procedural Background

         The instant litigation involves a lawsuit for personal injuries allegedly sustained by plaintiff onboard the SEACOR LIBERTY on April 23, 2014. Plaintiff alleges that, at the time of his accident, he was attempting to maneuver a section of pipe being transferred by crane from the SEACOR LIBERTY to a platform. The SEACOR LIBERTY was being used to transport workers and materials to McMoRan's offshore platform located in block 193 of the West Cameron field on the Outer Continental Shelf in the Gulf of Mexico. Superior was under contract to provide services and labor to McMoRan to assist in plugging and abandoning the oil and gas well at that platform. Once in position, the SEACOR LIBERTY housed workers of other McMoRan contractors (such as Superior) and stored materials for the work being performed on the adjacent platform.

         The following facts are undisputed:

• Seacor had a contract (the "time charter") with Freeport - McMoRan Oil & Gas, LLC ("McMoRan") for the charter of SEACOR's liftboat SEACOR LIBERTY.
• Pursuant to the time charter between Seacor and McMoran, the SEACOR LIBERTY was provided to McMoran. With respect to the use of vessel, the time charter between Seacor and McMoran states as follows: "The vessels shall be used for the lawful transportation of materials, supplies, equipment and personnel incidental to Charterer's (McMoran's) operations in the exploration for and the production of oil and gas."
• Superior was under contract to provide services and labor to McMoRan to assist in plugging and abandoning the oil and gas well at that platform.
• Once in position, the SEACOR LIBERTY housed workers of other McMoRan contractors (such as Superior) and stored materials for the work being performed on the adjacent platform.
• As a contractor of McMoran, Superior was required to sign a Vessel Boarding Agreement ("VBA") with SEACOR as a condition of being allowed to use the SEACOR LIBERTY. The VBA that Superior signed is dated May 25, 2012.
• The VBA between Seacor and Superior states:
The purpose of the agreement is to provide Contractor ("Superior") access to the vessels owned, chartered and/or operated by Owner ("Seacor"), its subsidiaries and affiliates (the Vessels") and further, to provide employees of Contractor with transportation, working, living or operating support aboard the Vessels and to allocate the risks and liabilities arising out of Owner granting to Contractor access to and services aboard the Vessels.
• The VBA further states:
II. INDEMNITIES
A. Owner Indemnities OWNER [SEACOR] AGREES TO INDEMNIFY CONTRACTOR GROUP [SUPERIOR] AGAINST ANY AND ALL CLAIMS FOR ILLNESS, INJURY AND/OR DEATH, PROPERTY DAMAGE, LOSS OF EQUIPMENT, OR OTHERWISE THAT MAY BE ASSERTED BY OWNER GROUP [SEACOR] OR OWNER GROUP EMPLOYEES, RESULTING FROM, ARISING OUT OF, OR IN ANY WAY CONNECTED WITH ORINCIDENT TO, DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY, THE SERVICES;[1]AND WHETHER OR NOT ANY CLAIM SHALL ARISE, IN WHOLE OR IN PART, OR BE CAUSED BY THE SOLE, JOINT OR CONCURRENT NEGLIGENCE OR OTHER FAULT OF ANY PARTY, INCLUDTNG CONTRACTOR GROUP, OR BY ANY LEGAL THEORY, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO STRICT LIABILITY, ASSIGNED TO CONTRACTOR GROUP. OWNER FURTHER AGREES TO INDEMNIFY CONTRACTOR GROUP AGAINST ANY AND ALL CLAIMS BY CONTRACTOR GROUP'S CUSTOMER FOR CONTRACTUAL INDEMNITY OBLIGATIONS ARISING OUT OF OR RELATED TO ANY AND ALL CLAIMS DESCRIBED IN THE PRECEDING SENTENCE OF THIS SECTION ILA
B. Contractor Indemnities CONTRACTOR [SUPERIOR] AGREES TO INDEMNIFY OWNER GROUP [SEACOR] AGAINST ANY AND ALL CLAIMS FOR ILLNESS, INJURY AND/OR DEATH, PROPERTY DAMAGE, LOSS OF EQUIPMENT, OR OTHERWISE THAT MAYBE ASSERTED BY OWNER GROUP OR OWNER GROUP EMPLOYEES, RESULTING FROM, ARISING OUT OF, OR IN ANY WAY CONNECTED WITH OR INCIDENT TO, DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY, THE SERVICES; AND WHETHER ORNOT ANY CLAIM SHALL ARISE, IN WHOLE OR IN PART, OR BE CAUSED BY THE SOLE, JOINT OR CONCURRENT NEGLIGENCE OR OTHER FAULT OF ANY PARTY, INCLUDING OWNER GROUP, OR BY ANY LEGAL THEORY, INCLUDING BUTNOT LIMITED TO STRICT LIABILITY, ASSIGNED TO OWNER GROUP OR BY THE UNSEAWORTHINESS OF ANY VESSEL. CONTRACTOR FURTHER AGREES TO INDEMNIFY OWNER GROUP AGAINST ANY AND ALL CLAIMS BY OWNER GROUP'S CUSTOMER FOR CONTRACTUAL INDEMNITY OBLIGATIONS ARISING OUT OF OR RELATED TO ANY AND ALL CLAIMS DESCRIBED IN THE PRECEDING SENTENCE OF THIS SECTION ILB. CONTRACTOR'S OBLIGATION TO INDEMNIFY OWNER GROUP SHALL EXTEND TO ANY REASONABLE ATTORNEY FEES AND LEGAL EXPENSES RELATING TO THE CLAIM, AND INCLUDES ANY REASONABLE ATTORNEY FEES OR LEGAL EXPENSES RELATED TO SUCCESSFULLYENFORCINGTHE PROVISIONS OF THE AGREEMENT (emphasis added).
• The plaintiff was "employed by Superior Energy Services, LLC . .. assisting with the temporary abandonment of well #1 aboard a fixed oil and gas platform owned by McMoRan Oil & Gas located on the outer continental shelf."
• The plaintiff alleges he was injured on the platform on April 23, 2014 while attempting to maneuver a section of pipe being transferred by crane from the SEACOR LIBERTY to the platform.
• On September 1, 2015, plaintiff filed this lawsuit against Superior and Seacor.
• Pursuant to the VBA, Seacor demanded defense, indemnity, and insurance coverage from Superior, ...

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.