Wednesday, November 10, 2010


The BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling Commission (BitToothEnergy)

Courtesy of MoonofA, I am able to tell you that this past weekend the final act in the closing of the Deepwater Horizon well was theplacing of a steel cap on top of the well, after the top plugs had been put in place, and the well was ready to be abandoned.

And on Monday the Oil Spill Commission began two days of public hearings.

As part of this, the Oil Spill Commission has issued its preliminary conclusions which are:
• Flow path was exclusively through shoe track and up through casing.
• Cement (potentially contaminated or displaced by other materials) in shoe track and in some portion of annular space failed to isolate hydrocarbons.
• Pre-job laboratory data should have prompted redesign of cement slurry.
• Cement evaluation tools might have identified cementing failure, but most operators would not have run tools at that time. They would have relied on the negative pressure test.
• Negative pressure test repeatedly showed that primary cement job had not isolated hydrocarbons.
• Despite those results, BP and TO personnel treated negative pressure test as a complete success.
• BP’s temporary abandonment procedures introduced additional risk.
• Number of simultaneous activities and nature of flow monitoring equipment made kick detection more difficult during riser displacement.
• Nevertheless, kick indications were clear enough that if observed would have allowed the rig crew to have responded earlier.
• Once the rig crew recognized the influx, there were several options that might have prevented or delayed the explosion and/or shut in the well.
• Diverting overboard might have prevented or delayed the explosion. Triggering the EDS prior to the explosion might have shut in the well and limited the impact of any explosion and/or the blowout.
• Technical conclusions regarding BOP should await results of forensic BOP examination and testing.
• No evidence at this time to suggest that there was a conscious decision to sacrifice safety concerns to save money.

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