Friday 23 February 2018

BP to publish oil disaster report

The explosion on the Deepwater Horizon rig in April sparked a massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico
The explosion on the Deepwater Horizon rig in April sparked a massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico
BP said a complex series of events led to the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster

BP is to publish the findings of an investigation into the causes of the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster which led to the largest offshore spill in history.

It remains unclear how much responsibility BP will take itself for the spill, which followed an explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in April in which 11 people were killed.

But it has been reported that the internal probe, led by the oil giant's head of safety and operations Mark Bly is expected to assign blame to BP as well as other companies involved in the well's operations.

Reports claim the findings are expected to lay out why engineers missed key signs that the well was unstable, such as worrying pressure tests, but BP has refused to give an indication of the conclusions before publication.

Other companies expected to bear some of the blame are Transocean, which owned and operated the Deepwater Horizon rig, and Halliburton, which was responsible for cementing the well to secure it.

Further probes are being conducted into the disaster, including a US criminal investigation and a joint inquiry by the US Coast Guard and the US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management.

The explosion on April 20 killed 11 workers and caused an estimated 4.9 million barrels of oil to gush into the Gulf.

At the peak of the crisis, 3.5 million feet of containment boom was used to rein in the spill, although this has now been reduced to 1.72 million.

BP has come under heavy fire in the US but the political pressure has eased since the oil firm set up a $20bn (€16bn) fund to meet compensation payouts and costs.

The crisis cost former chief executive Tony Hayward his job after a series of PR blunders and he will make way in October for fellow board member Bob Dudley, who becomes BP's first overseas boss.

Press Association

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