OT, but would be on topic for alt.gulf.repair
What gets me about the Gulf oil leak is that they seem to have not
planned ahead for what would be a remedy for this situation. They
seem to have done no testing at this depth, and are just trying
possible remedies on a guess as to whether they would work or which
would more likely work, or maybe trying those which worked for wells
less deep, but were never tested at this depth.
I don't think it would have required an actual leak to do testing.
I think the pres of BP admitted there had been "not enough planning".
Plus the dead battery in the BOP.
Article here about a plan that was in place: http://tinyurl.com/24z6auq
I guess the engineers did finally get a smaller pipe inserted into
the drill pipe to get some/most of the oil. I wonder if they have
some sort of expander on it to seal up between the two pipes.
60 Minutes just had an excellent piece (a rarity for them these days)
about the fubar in question. One of the people interviewed was a
university engineering professor that previously was the lead guru on
several other 'when things go wrong' investigations, including several
on offshore oil rigs. Apparently they did have redundant safety measures
in place, but kept on trucking when some critical ones were known to be
questionable, reducing their margin to zilch. They were trying a
quick-and-dirty procedure to cap the well, to save money and time, when
it all went wrong. Another case of multiple subs on the same site not
following the same procedures and precautions. The professor's
description reminded me a lot of the Shuttle fubars- little things, that
would have been survivable by themselves, creating a situation where
catastrophic failure occurred.
Also reminded me of the shuttle where the grunts told the PTB that
something might be wrong but the PTB got cocky and thougt they knew
best. On the second shuttle accident there was discussion of problems
almost from the getgo including some suggestions to use the space
station and other cameras to see if they could find any damage. Dont
know if that would have saved them, but it certainly couldn't hurt.
I want to find a voracious, small-minded predator
and name it after the IRS.
As I recall, it was far worse than that. The engineers from the
booster manufacturer had data that showed seals had come close to
failing in previous launches and the worst erosion occured during the
coldest weather, which was attributed to the seals being shrunk and
stiff. They told them to launch it was unsafe, but were overruled by
managment that was under pressure from NASA to get it launched on that
cold day. It sounded to me like a good case for criminal negligence
could have been made.
Yes, especially since they had another shuttle that while not ready
for immediate launch, likely could have been made ready in time with
an all out effort. Also, despite knowing that debris had broken off
and struck the shuttle on launch many times, they never did any
testing to try to quantify how much damage it might be causing. That
testing was only done AFTER the disaster.
There are a lot of accidents that would have been difficult to predict
or prevent. The shuttle ones were not. And I suspect when the
investigation is concluded in the BP oil leak, the same will be true
there. But, I must be careful. We have some oil field experts here
who feel unless you have worked on a rig, you should not comment.
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