Home > Uncategorized > Pressure Tests Critical In BP Blowout Capping

Pressure Tests Critical In BP Blowout Capping

I have been waiting patiently as most of the civilized world that ought to give a damn should on whether this latest attempt to cap the BP oil blowout is successful.

What is critical is not that the cap has plugged the gusher 5,000 feet under the Gulf of Mexico. But the pressure tests as to the well’s integrity.8,000 feet below close to the  reservoir holding billions of barrels of crude.

Lose pressure, and we have a worst case scenario that even the relief wells might fail. If the thousands of pounds per square inch pressure holds, they succeeded.

The reason I am rushing to judgment is the dismal failure in this report by MSNBC.com whose writers and editors missed out on the crucial importance of the pressure tests. Yes, they mentioned the tests in a subhead and twice in their story.

A more reliable accounting of the frantic work by BP and government watchdog scientists is in this report by the Los Angeles Times. Their reporting leaves no doubt in even the first-time readers of the importance of the tests insisted upon by the government.

The blowout is in its 86th day and those reporting should by now understand the principles involved in understanding simple physics.

One consolation is that if the pressure fails because of leaks somewhere far below in the pipe casing, at least most of the runaway well’s oil can be siphoned to surface ships as a result of the new cap structure.

The big geological question is whether the original drilling by Deepwater Horizons ruptured the rock formation containing the oil deposits.

Lack of government oversight and cost-cutting measures by BP installing weaker and smaller drill casings as well as downplaying a defective blowout preventer contributed to the blowout and explosion that killed 11 crew on the drilling platform April 20. The result is the worst accidental environmental disaster in our nation’s history with economic damages expected to surpass $20 billion.
Stay tuned and be aware of what you read. For the most part, CNN and MSNBC cable television networks are doing credible reporting as it applies to the mechanics of stopping the blowout. I haven’t watched Fox enough to comment on their veracity.

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