over 5,000 barrels of oil spilling into the Gulf of Mexico every day
after the oil well leak on April 20, eight senators are contemplating
pressing criminal and civil charges against BP. In the mean time, BP
is scrambling to find solutions to what could be considered one of
oil spills in U.S. history.
Plc., Transocean Ltd., and Halliburton Co. attended two separate
hearings in Washington D.C. on May 11 and another on May 12. Congress
questioned the events that led to the leak and what actions BP is
taking to repair the well that killed 11 people, put
many fisherman out
of work, and caused the spread of oil to surrounding waters
threatening wildlife (which prompted the National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Association to increase the ban of fishing area in the
Gulf from seven percent to 19 percent).
seen the most catastrophic possibilities and it seems to me like
they're flailing around going from one thing to another not really
knowing what in fact is necessary to stop this, short of that relief
well that will just take way too long," said Sen. Robert
first tried to funnel the oil to ships using a 98-tonne "top
hat" dome on the seabed floor, and due to large hydrate
volumes, the dome clogged. More recently, a smaller, one
mile long funnel was set in its place was will collect some
of the oil approximately 5,000 feet below the surface. A heavy mud
mixture will be pumped into the well's blowout preventer in
preparation for cement to seal the well permanently. In addition, as
Menendez stated above, BP plans to drill a relief well that could
take as long as 80 days to construct.
latest efforts include the riser insertion tube tool (RITT)
containment system, and according to BP's official website, it was
"put into place in the end of the leaking riser" and "is
operational." This tool is collecting 2,000
barrels a day, and produced oil is being stored in ships above
surface. The senators question BP's "proven technology and
equipment" during this time.
I always hope for the best, this is looking like really
out-of-control bad," said Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL).
BP's new developments will help clear some of the damage, new
problems arise with problems concerning where the oil
will travel to next. Considering BP's history with
oil-related accidents, these eight senators will surely ride the
company's coattails through the rest of this investigation and
certainly through a criminal trial.