As a result of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, owners of vacation rental properties and hotels are losing or at risk of losing business in the summer months, when tourism in the area is at its peak. As the oil slick continues to spread, owners of beach-front property may continue to lose business for months, if not years, to come. Even following an initial clean up of the area, owners of vacation property may still struggle to fill their hotels, homes and condominiums due to the long-lasting effect of the oil spill on Gulf Coast beaches. Research shows that oil, such as that leaking from the sunken Deepwater Horizon drilling rig, can remain beneath the sand for more than ten years after an oil spill.
BP Oil Spill Impacts Tourism Industry
Tourism accounts for a substantial portion of the economy of several states along the Gulf Coast, including Florida and Louisiana. In 2000 alone, more than 23 million tourists visited Florida beaches, spending nearly $22 billion during their trips. However, due to the recent Gulf of Mexico oil spill, all workers directly and indirectly linked to the tourism industry, including hotel entrepreneurs and beach-front property owners, are expected to suffer profit losses.
The Effect of the Gulf Oil Spill on Beaches
The impact of an oil spill on Florida beaches can be best demonstrated by examining the Valdez oil spill, which covered nearly 1200 miles of Alaskan shoreline. According to research conducted in Prince William Sound, located on the south coast of Alaska, oil spill pollution can take ten or more years to disappear. Even if oil is not visible on the surface of nearby beaches, the effect of the oil spill on Louisiana beaches may still be evident; pools of oil may remain beneath the sand for more than a decade.
In 2001, researchers dug more than 12,000 holes at dozens of beach sites which had been covered in oil during the late 1980s. In more than half of the pits, black oily liquid was found. In a more recent example, a fisherman who experienced the effects of an oil spill along the coast of Mexico commented that beach-front hotels had “buckets of rags and kerosene” for tourists to wipe the oil from their feet. These stories may provide insight into the potentially devastating economic effect of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill on beach-front property and hotel owners.
Am I Eligible for a Hotel and Rental Property Loss of Business Lawsuit?
Our Gulf of Mexico oil spill lawyers are currently accepting oil spill claims from business and individuals who own vacation property or hotels along the Gulf Coast and have lost business as a result of the BP Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion. BP has set aside $20 billion to handle oil spill claims from individuals and businesses affected by the oil spill, including hotel and beach front property owners. If you have suffered a loss of profits due to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, you may be eligible to collect compensation.