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Feds: Test results from well not as good as hoped

 This image taken from video provided by BP PLC at 15:57 CDT, shows that oil has stopped flowing  from the new 75-ton cap atop the site of the Deepwat...
 Oysterman Johnny Schneider of Mereaux, La., discusses his feelings about the Deepwater Horizon oil spill being capped as he stands on his oyster boat...
 The Texas Responder oil skimming vessel, left, sails away from vessels assisting in the capping of the Deepwater Horizon oil well leak on the Gulf of...
 Oysterman Elward Perez of St. Bernard, La., discusses his feelings about the Deepwater Horizon oil spill being capped as he stands on his oyster boat...
 This image taken from video provided by BP PLC at 14:27 CDT, shows that oil has stopped flowing from the new 75-ton cap atop the site of the Deepwate...
 This image taken from video provided by BP PLC at 17:56 CDT shows that oil has stopped flowing from the new 75-ton cap atop the site of the Deepwater...
 In this combo made from images taken from video provided by BP PLC, oil flows from two of three valves on the 75-ton cap atop the site of the Deepwat...
 Capt. Joanna Newman puts her dinner in a microwave below a television in the galley of the Pacific Responder oil skimming vessel, which is located se...
 This image taken from video provided by BP PLC at 15:13 CDT shows that oil has stopped flowing  from the new 75-ton cap atop the site of the Deepwate...
 Drilling rigs and workboats operate at the site of the Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico Friday, July 16, 2010. The wellhead has been ...
 The Boa Sub C work boat, top, operates near the Q4000 drilling rig at the site of the Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico Friday, July 1...
 The Helix Producer operates at the site of the Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico Friday, July 16, 2010. The wellhead has been capped a...
 Workboats operate near the Transocean Development Drilling Rig II at the site of the Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico Friday, July 16...
  This combination of two photos made from images taken from video provided by BP PLC shows oil flowing from two of three valves on the new 75-ton cap...
 A workboat is surrounded by an oily slick at the site of the Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico Friday, July 16, 2010. The wellhead has...
 Map shows the forecast location of oil

Gulf Oil Spill

This image taken from video provided by BP PLC at 15:57 CDT, shows that oil has stopped flowing from the new 75-ton cap atop the site of the Deepwat...

Gulf Oil Spill

Oysterman Johnny Schneider of Mereaux, La., discusses his feelings about the Deepwater Horizon oil spill being capped as he stands on his oyster boat...

CORRECTION Gulf Oil Spill

The Texas Responder oil skimming vessel, left, sails away from vessels assisting in the capping of the Deepwater Horizon oil well leak on the Gulf of...

Gulf Oil Spill

Oysterman Elward Perez of St. Bernard, La., discusses his feelings about the Deepwater Horizon oil spill being capped as he stands on his oyster boat...

Gulf Oil Spill

This image taken from video provided by BP PLC at 14:27 CDT, shows that oil has stopped flowing from the new 75-ton cap atop the site of the Deepwate...

Gulf Oil Spill

This image taken from video provided by BP PLC at 17:56 CDT shows that oil has stopped flowing from the new 75-ton cap atop the site of the Deepwater...

Gulf Oil Spill

In this combo made from images taken from video provided by BP PLC, oil flows from two of three valves on the 75-ton cap atop the site of the Deepwat...

Gulf Oil Spill

Capt. Joanna Newman puts her dinner in a microwave below a television in the galley of the Pacific Responder oil skimming vessel, which is located se...

Gulf Oil Spill

This image taken from video provided by BP PLC at 15:13 CDT shows that oil has stopped flowing from the new 75-ton cap atop the site of the Deepwate...

APTOPIX Gulf Oil Spill

Drilling rigs and workboats operate at the site of the Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico Friday, July 16, 2010. The wellhead has been ...

Gulf Oil Spill

The Boa Sub C work boat, top, operates near the Q4000 drilling rig at the site of the Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico Friday, July 1...

Gulf Oil Spill

The Helix Producer operates at the site of the Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico Friday, July 16, 2010. The wellhead has been capped a...

Gulf Oil Spill

Workboats operate near the Transocean Development Drilling Rig II at the site of the Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico Friday, July 16...

CORRECTION Gulf Oil Spill

This combination of two photos made from images taken from video provided by BP PLC shows oil flowing from two of three valves on the new 75-ton cap...

Gulf Oil Spill

A workboat is surrounded by an oily slick at the site of the Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico Friday, July 16, 2010. The wellhead has...

GULF OIL SPILL

Map shows the forecast location of oil

Pressure readings have been less than ideal from the new cap shutting oil into BP's busted well, but the crude will remain locked in while engineers look for evidence of whether there is an undiscovered leak, the federal pointman for the disaster said Friday.
Retired Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen said on a conference call that pressure readings from the cap have not reached the level that would show there are no new leaks in the well.
Allen said BP's test of the cap, which started 24 hours previously by shutting three valves and stopping the flow of oil into the water, would continue for at least 6 hours. It was scheduled to last up to 48 hours.
He said the developments were "generally good news" but needed close monitoring.
Allen said there are two possible reasons being debated by scientists on the project for why the pressure hasn't risen as high as desired: The reservoir that is the source of the oil could be depleting after a three-month spill, or there could be an undiscovered leak somewhere down in the well.
"We don't know because we don't know the exact condition of the well bore," Allen said.
He said the test will go ahead for another 6-hour period before being reassessed to see if BP needs to reopen the cap and go back to piping some of the oil to ships on the surface.
If it were reopened, Allen said, "There's no doubt there would be some discharge into the environment."
Pressure readings after 24 hours were about 6,700 pounds per square inch and rising slowly, Allen said, below the 7,500 psi that would clearly show the well was not leaking. He said pressure continued to rise between 2 and 10 psi per hour.
He said a seismic probe of the surrounding sea floor found no sign of a leak in the ground, one of the major concerns because oil erupting into the surroundings would be harder to contain and could weaken the well before it is plugged for good.
The cap is a temporary measure. Even if it holds, BP needs to plug the gusher with cement and mud deep underground, where the seal will hold more permanently than any cap from above could.


Updated : 2021-05-17 07:38 GMT+08:00