Causes of Deepwater Horizon oil spill
Eight catastrophic failures led to the explosion that destroyed the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico, killing 11 folks and ultimately causing one of the primary oil leaks ever sold, based on BP’s long-awaited investigation in to the accident.
BP accepts its role in the catastrophe but in addition points the hand at two of its technicians.
A single day ahead of the accident, the team had pumped cement into base associated with borehole, a typical treatment meant to prevent oil dripping aside. On the day regarding the accident, the team had been conducting checks to determine that the well was indeed properly sealed.
BP states the accident was due to the failure of eight different safety systems that have been meant to avoid this sort of incident:
The concrete at the end of the borehole didn't develop a seal, and gas and oil begun to leak through it in to the pipe ultimately causing the surface. BP claims the concrete formula seems not to have already been around the task.
The bottom of the pipe on surface ended up being sealed in two ways. It too was filled with cement, looked after included two mechanical valves made to stop the movement of coal and oil. Many of these failed, enabling oil and gas to travel within the pipe to the area.
Stress test misinterpreted
The staff performed various stress tests to find out whether the fine was sealed or perhaps not. The outcome of the examinations were misinterpreted, so they really believed the well had been in order.
Drip not spotted in no time
Whether a well is in order or otherwise not, the crew at surface must be able to identify a flow of gas and oil towards area by shopping for unforeseen increases in stress inside fine. Exactly this sort of boost occurred about 50 minutes prior to the rig exploded, however it wasn't interpreted as a leak.
Valve failure no. 2
About 8 mins ahead of the surge, a combination of mud and fuel began pouring onto the floor of the rig. The team straight away attemptedto shut a device in a tool called the blowout preventer, which sits from the sea floor outrageous associated with the fine borehole. It would not work correctly.
The team had the option of diverting the dirt and gasoline from the rig, venting it safely through pipes over the part. Instead, the flow had been diverted to a computer device aboard the rig built to separate lower amounts of gas from a flow of mud. The so-called mud-gas separator had been quickly overwhelmed and combustible fuel begun to engulf the rig.
No gas security
The rig had an onboard fuel detection system that should have sounded the alarm and caused the closing of ventilation fans to prevent the gas reaching prospective reasons for ignition, including the rig’s machines. This method were unsuccessful.
No battery for BOP
The explosion ruined the control lines the team were utilizing to attempt to shut security valves within the blowout preventer. But the blowout preventer features its own safety method which two separate systems need closed the valves immediately with regards to lost connection with the outer lining. One system appears to have had a-flat electric battery while the other a defective switch. Consequently, the blowout preventer couldn't near.
“It is evident that a series of complex occasions, as opposed to one error or failure, generated the tragedy. Multiple functions, including BP, [oilfield services company] Halliburton and [offshore drilling company] Transocean, had been involved, ” stated Tony Hayward, BP’s chief executive.