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BP Announces Failure of 'Top Kill' Procedure to Stop Oil Gusher

 
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05/30/2010 01:17 AM
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BP Announces Failure of 'Top Kill' Procedure to Stop Oil Gusher
ROBERT, Louisiana -- BP admitted defeat Saturday in its attempt to plug the Gulf of Mexico oil leak by pumping mud into a busted well, but is readying yet another approach after repeated failures to stop the crude that's fouling marshland and beaches.

BP PLC Chief Operating Officer Doug Suttles said the company determined the "top kill" had failed after it spent three days pumping heavy drilling mud into the crippled well 5,000 feet underwater. More than 1.2 million gallons of mud was used, but most of it escaped out of the damaged riser.

In the six weeks since the spill began, the company has failed in each attempt to stop the gusher, as estimates of how much oil is leaking grow more dire. The spill is the worst in U.S. history -- exceeding even the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster -- and dumping between 18 million and 40 million gallons into the Gulf, according to government estimates.

"This scares everybody, the fact that we can't make this well stop flowing, the fact that we haven't succeeded so far," Suttles said. "Many of the things we're trying have been done on the surface before, but have never been tried at 5,000 feet."

[link to www.foxnews.com]





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