BP Gets Cap Back on Well After Robot Mishap

Oil was gushing at 104,000 gallons an hour
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jun 24, 2010 6:00 AM CDT
BP Gets Cap Back on Well After Robot Mishap
Oil gushes from the broken wellhead, at the site of the Deepwater Horizon oil well in the Gulf of Mexico, June 23, 2010.   ((AP Photo/BP PLC) NO SALES)

A cap was back in place on BP's broken oil well after a deep-sea blunder forced crews to temporarily remove what has been the most effective method so far for containing some of the massive Gulf of Mexico spill. Engineers using remote-controlled submarines repositioned the cap late yesterday after it had been off for much of the day. It had captured 700,000 gallons of oil in 24 hours before one of the robots bumped into it late in the morning.

Bob Dudley, BP's new point man for the oil response, said crews had done the right thing to remove the cap because fluid seemed to be leaking and could have been a safety hazard. "It's a setback, and now we will go back into operation and show how this technology can work." While the cap was off, clouds of black oil gushed unchecked again at up to 104,000 gallons per hour, though a specialized ship at the surface managed to suck up and incinerate 438,000 gallons. (Read more British Petroleum stories.)

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