Tuesday, July 20, 2010

UC Berkeley's Deepwater Horizon Study Group Report


The testimony of Dr. Robert Bea is available in a strongly worded pdf report. Here are a few of his conclusions:

"I believe the Deepwater Horizon failure developed due to:• improper cement design (segmented discontinuous cement sheath)

• flawed Quality Assurance and Quality Control (QA / QC) – no cement bond logs, ineffective oversight of operations

• bad decision making – removing the pressure barrier – displacing the drilling mud with sea water 8,000 feet below the drill deck

• loss of situational awareness – early warning signs not properly detected, analyzed or corrected (repeated major gas kicks, lost drilling tools, including evidence of damaged parts of the Blow Out Preventer [BOP] during drilling and/or cementing, lost circulation, changes in mud volume and drill string weight)

• improper operating procedures – premature off-loading of the drilling mud (weight material not available at critical time)

• flawed design and maintenance of the final line of defense – including the shear rams of the Blow Out Preventer (BOP).

• improper well design (configuration of well tubulars etc...

Furthermore, Dr. Bea believes the response effort has been lacking, to say the least. Here are his comments:

"My analysis of the facts developed to date show that BP PLC and the DOI MMS did not develop or implement effective measures for:

• well control after loss of containment – blowout

• capturing the loss of control materials (gases, oil, water)

• clean-up of the loss of control materials in the open ocean (booms, skimmers, burning, dispersants)"

The report indicates gross mis-management and almost nefarious behavior on the part of BP

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