While acknowledging that drilling safety has gotten better in the Gulf of Mexico in the last year and a half, a 136-page report issued this week by the National Academy of Engineering finds fault with BP’s deficient safety culture for the April 2010 explosion aboard the Deepwater Horizon rig and subsequent spill of millions of barrels of oil into the gulf. The explosion claimed the lives of 11 workers.

The NAE, which advises the federal government and whose report will likely be seen — unlike the presidential commission that studied the disaster — as non-partisan, characterizes BP management as having underestimated the complexity and danger of deepwater drilling operations and failing to “approve and monitor well plans and operational practices and personnel competency and training.”

The report also details a series of technical failures that precipitated the explosion, although it does not pinpoint a single cause.

In a terse response to the report, BP says it “has acknowledged its role in the accident and has taken concrete steps to further enhance safety and risk management throughout its global operations” — a (probably) accidentally tongue-in-cheek response in light of fact that concrete poured into the well failed critical pressure tests before the disaster, a factor that was a bone of contention early in the investigation between BP and subcontractor Halliburton.

Read more here.

To post a comment, please log into your IND account. If you do not have an account, click the "register" button to create one. Facebook comments can be used as an alternative to creating an account at theIND.com.

LA LA Land

Read the Flipping Paper!

Click Here for the Entire Print Version of
IND Monthly