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Archive for June 17th, 2010

Did The BP Oil Well Really ‘Blow Out’ In February Instead Of April?

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June 17, 2010: Washington’s Blog Editors / Washington’s Blog – June 17, 2010

The Deepwater Horizon blew up on April 20th, and sank a couple of days later. BP has been criticized for failing to report on the seriousness of the blow out for several weeks.

However, as a whistleblower previously told 60 Minutes, there was an accident at the rig a month or more prior to the April 20th explosion: [Mike Williams, the chief electronics technician on the Deepwater Horizon, and one of the last workers to leave the doomed rig] said they were told it would take 21 days; according to him, it actually took six weeks. With the schedule slipping, Williams says a BP manager ordered a faster pace.

“And he requested to the driller, ‘Hey, let’s bump it up. Let’s bump it up.’ And what he was talking about there is he’s bumping up the rate of penetration. How fast the drill bit is going down,” Williams said. Williams says going faster caused the bottom of the well to split open, swallowing tools and that drilling fluid called “mud.” “We actually got stuck. And we got stuck so bad we had to send tools down into the drill pipe and sever the pipe,” Williams explained.

That well was abandoned and Deepwater Horizon had to drill a new route to the oil. It cost BP more than two weeks and millions of dollars. “We were informed of this during one of the safety meetings, that somewhere in the neighborhood of $25 million was lost in bottom hole assembly and ‘mud.’ And you always kind of knew that in the back of your mind when they start throwing these big numbers around that there was gonna be a push coming, you know? A push to pick up production and pick up the pace,” Williams said.

Asked if there was pressure on the crew after this happened, Williams told Pelley, “There’s always pressure, but yes, the pressure was increased.” But the trouble was just beginning: when drilling resumed, Williams says there was an accident on the rig that has not been reported before. He says, four weeks before the explosion, the rig’s most vital piece of safety equipment was damaged.

As Bloomberg reports today, problems at the well actually started in February: BP Plc was struggling to seal cracks in its Macondo well as far back as February, more than two months before an explosion killed 11 and spewed oil into the Gulf of Mexico. It took 10 days to plug the first cracks, according to reports BP filed with the Minerals Management Service that were later delivered to congressional investigators. Cracks in the surrounding rock continued to complicate the drilling operation during the ensuing weeks. Left unsealed, they can allow explosive natural gas to rush up the shaft.

“Once they realized they had oil down there, all the decisions they made were designed to get that oil at the lowest cost,” said Peter Galvin of the Center for Biological Diversity, which has been working with congressional investigators probing the disaster. “It’s been a doomed voyage from the beginning.”

On Feb. 13, BP told the minerals service it was trying to seal cracks in the well about 40 miles (64 kilometers) off the Louisiana coast, drilling documents obtained by Bloomberg show. Investigators are still trying to determine whether the fissures played a role in the disaster.

The company attempted a “cement squeeze,” which involves pumping cement to seal the fissures, according to a well activity report. Over the following week the company made repeated attempts to plug cracks that were draining expensive drilling fluid, known as “mud,” into the surrounding rocks. BP used three different substances to plug the holes before succeeding, the documents show. “Most of the time you do a squeeze and then let it dry and you’re done,” said John Wang, an assistant professor of petroleum and natural gas engineering at Penn State in University Park, Pennsylvania. “It dries within a few hours.” Repeated squeeze attempts are unusual and may indicate rig workers are using the wrong kind of cement, Wang said.

In other words, the well may have blown out in February, and never been properly repaired. If cracks in the well were never fully sealed, then the well may have been unstable starting in February and continuing until the April 20 explosion. (There is substantial evidence that there are cracks in the well now.)

Bloomberg continues: In early March, BP told the minerals agency the company was having trouble maintaining control of surging natural gas, according to e-mails released May 30 by the House Energy and Commerce Committee, which is investigating the spill. While gas surges are common in oil drilling, companies have abandoned wells if they determine the risk is too high.

On March 10, BP executive Scherie Douglas e-mailed Frank Patton, the mineral service’s drilling engineer for the New Orleans district, telling him: “We’re in the midst of a well control situation.” The incident was a “showstopper,” said Robert Bea, an engineering professor at the University of California, Berkeley, who has consulted with the Interior Department on offshore drilling safety. “They damn near blew up the rig.”

 In other words, not only is it possible that the well casing has been unstable since February, but BP apparently ignored standard drilling practices by failing to abandon the well when the natural gas began surging too violently. Sure, the rig didn’t actually catch fire and sink until April, but cracks in the well and dangerous natural gas surges may mean that the well actually started blowing out much earlier.

Note 1: These new facts also add to the massive evidence that BP has been criminally negligent.

Note 2: I am not saying that the well has been gushing oil since February (although oil industry expert Matthew Simmons says that the amount of oil leaking from the riser and blowout preventer since April 20th does not account for the massive oil plumes observed in the Gulf). What I am saying is that the well may have lost structural integrity and stability as early as February.

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: Scroll down to the next article posted just before this one for more info– SJH

Link to original article below…

http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2010/06/did-bp-oil-well-blow-out-in-february.html

BP Aware Of Cracks In Gulf Oil Well Two Months Before Explosion!

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June 17, 2010: Paul Joseph Watson / Prison Planet.com – June 17, 2010

BP was aware of cracks appearing in the Macondo well as far back as February, right around the time Goldman Sachs and BP Chairman Tony Hayward were busy dumping their stocks in the company on the eve of the explosion that led to the oil spill, according to information uncovered by congressional investigators.

The Mining and Mineral Services agency released documents to Bloomberg indicating that BP “was trying to seal cracks in the well about 40 miles (64 kilometers) off the Louisiana coast,” according to the report. The fissures, which BP began to attempt to fix on February 13, could have played a role in the disaster, though this is a question still being explored by investigators. Improperly sealed, the cracks cause explosive natural gas to rush up the shaft.

“The company attempted a “cement squeeze,” which involves pumping cement to seal the fissures, according to a well activity report. Over the following week the company made repeated attempts to plug cracks that were draining expensive drilling fluid, known as “mud,” into the surrounding rocks,” states the report.

As we previously highlighted, eyewitness evidence indicates that Deepwater Horizon managers knew that the BP oil rig had major problems before its explosion on April 20. A crew member who rescued burning workers on the rig told Houston attorney Tony Buzbee of a conversation between Deepwater Horizon installation manager Jimmy Harrell and someone in Houston. According to the witness, Harrell was screaming, “Are you fucking happy? Are you fucking happy? The rig’s on fire! I told you this was gonna happen.”

The fact that BP managers were aware of problems with the rig and were seemingly unconcerned about fixing them only lends more weight to the already startling indications of some having foreknowledge of the disaster. As we highlighted last week, on page 37 of British Petroleum’s own investigative report into the oil spill, it is stated that the Hydraulic Control System on equipment designed to automatically seal the well in an emergency was modified without BP’s knowledge sometime before the explosion.

Highly suspicious stock and share trades by people connected to BP before the explosion indicate some extent of foreknowledge. Goldman Sachs dumped 44% of its shares in BP Oil during the first quarter of 2010 – shares that subsequently lost 36 percent of their value, equating to $96 million. The current chairman of Goldman Sachs is Bilderberg luminary Peter Sutherland, who is also the former chairman of British Petroleum. Furthermore, as reported by the London Telegraph on June 5th, Tony Hayward, the current BP CEO sold £1.4 million of his shares in the fuel giant weeks before the spill.

On April 12th, just over one week before the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded, Halliburton, the world’s second largest oilfield services corporation, surprised some by acquiring Boots & Coots, a relatively small but vastly experienced oil well control company.

Halliburton is named in the majority of some two dozen lawsuits filed since the explosion by Gulf Coast people and businesses who claim that the company is to blame for the disaster. Halliburton was forced to admit in testimony at a congressional hearing last month that it carried out a cementing operation 20 hours before the Gulf of Mexico rig went up in flames. The lawsuits claim that four Halliburton workers stationed on the rig improperly capped the well.

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: If the police knew an individual was in a building 2 hours before it went up in flames, the suspect would be taken into custody for questioning. Catch my drift? – SJH

Link to original article below…

http://www.infowars.com/bp-aware-of-cracks-in-oil-well-two-months-before-explosion/

US National Guard Training For Riot Control And Mass Detentions!

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June 17, 2010: Mac Slavo / SHTF Plan and Public Intelligence – June 15, 2010

In a previous story we noted that Reports Surfacing of Multi-State National Guard Mobilizations.

Further information made available after our report, much of which was published in the comment section by contributors who scoured the web for more information on the subject, suggests that the report was true and that national guard units had indeed been called up for training and possible deployment for domestic emergencies.

With the BP oil leak heating up (literally), there is a distinct possibility of noxious fumes and toxic hurricanes hitting our coasts over the coming months. Because there is minimal research on the subject available to the public, it is difficult to establish what is or is not a threat. Nonetheless, we advise those of our readers on or near the coast to remain aware of any developments regarding the possibility of emergencies or evacuations in their areas.

For those who may think we are overreacting to the possibility that the federal government would respond to an emergency, specifically mandatory evacuations on the gulf coast with the use of National Guard troops, we direct you to the article below, brought to our attention by Worldwide Wake Up Now and originally published at Public Intelligence.

In the event of a mass evacuation event, be it on the Gulf coast or as a result of an earthquake, chemical attack, biological attack, or other national emergency, we fully expect National Guard troops to be deployed. There will be mass chaos, violence, rioting, and looting, and local law enforcement simply will not have the capability to handle such a disaster.

The National Guard trains specifically for this, as depicted in the following article…

Vigilant Guard 2010 Riot Control, Detention Drills

by Public Intelligence

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: Hey Jimmy Z (see comment section), are you paying attention?! – SJH

Link to entire article below…

http://www.shtfplan.com/headline-news/national-guard-training-for-riot-control-mass-detentions_06152010