Fishermen Feeling Helpless As Oil Reaches Coastline
Tony Goutierrez is a crab fisherman who stands to lose everything once the oil reaches St. Bernard Parish. He says, “Pretty aggravated right now, fed up with this bull.”
And fed up because he feels more needs to be done to prevent this catastrophe. The parish has plans to set up booms to try and catch the oil but Goutierrez isn’t too optimistic. “A 30 knot wind, how is that gonna help? Let me see them out there in 15 ft. seas trying to put an oil mop out, I’d like to see it” Goutierrez says.
Many of the people out here are feeling pretty helpless. Fisherman Burl Gruetzner says “Right now we haven’t been told what we can do.”
George Barasich is already taking matters into his own hands…he’s about to file a class action lawsuit againg BP. Barasich explains, “As the shrimp industry dies, you watch coastal parishes fold so now you’re gonna watch whichever coastal parish that gets hit, will fold quicker. So we’re gonna need some help to stay alive.”
Barasich and the thousands of other fisherman expected to join the lawsuit are seeking money for lost profits and property damages. But as lawsuits typically take years, Goutierrez says his main concern is how he and his men will pay their bills now. “Everybody here is frustrated, trust me, everybody here will be out of work” Goutierrez says.