Saturday, May 29, 2010

Top Kill turns out to be Buzz Kill

According to the Christian Science Monitor and other news outlets, BP's third attempt to stem the flow of oil from the Macondo wellhead by pumping copious amounts of drilling mud down the shaft - a.k.a. top kill - has failed.

Apparently engineers were unable to match the overpowering flow of oil, which is surging out of the mangled pipeline at an estimated 26,000 psi.

On Saturday, President Obama issued a statement "While we initially received optimistic reports about the (top kill) procedure, it is now clear that it has not worked. Rear Admiral Mary Landry today directed BP to launch a new procedure whereby the riser pipe will be cut and a containment structure fitted over the leak."

The danger of course is that once the riser pipe is cut the oil, which is currently flowing out several small breaches, will now be shooting out at a much higher flow. Should the containment structure fail to seat or function, the increased amount of oil being discharged into the Gulf could dwarf anything we've seen thus far.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I wish Surfrider would come out with a position on the dispersent being used called Corexit. Crude oil certainly is a hazard to the ocean but I fear Corexist could be much worse.