A resident of Philadelphia, Mississippi, Burkeen worked as a crane operator on the Deepwater Horizon, a massive oil rig owned by Swiss-based Transocean and operated by UK-based BP.
According to attorneys, on April 20, Burkeen was operating the crane on deck before the first explosion rocked the rig. His responsibilities included getting other crew members to safety. He is believed to have been tragically killed in the second blast.
According to the attorneys, the Deepwater Horizon was unseaworthy, and the defendants were negligent in failing to properly maintain the rig and failing to meet federal safety standards.
"Oil rig workers face some of the most dangerous working conditions in the world. That's why companies like Transocean and BP have rules they must follow to protect every worker," said attorney Kurt Arnold. "When companies break the rules, Aaron and families like his suffer the consequences."
The lawsuit also includes claims on behalf of three Louisiana men who were seriously injured while working on the Deepwater Horizon. Two of those men were Transocean employees who worked with Burkeen every day, and one was with him at the time of the explosions.
The lawsuit was filed May 4 in Galveston County.