News / USA

BP Asks For Patience As It Tries to Plug Ruptured Well

Workers along the US Gulf of Mexico try to clean up the oil coming ashore from the ruptured well.
Workers along the US Gulf of Mexico try to clean up the oil coming ashore from the ruptured well.
Nico Colombant

BP's chief operating officer is asking for patience as robots, mud and assorted junk are used in its attempt to stop the worst oil spill in U.S. history.

BP Chief Operating Officer Doug Suttles says metal pieces and rubber balls are being shot into the well off the Louisiana coast, in addition to heavy mud and fluids, to try to stop the leak in an operation that has been going on since Wednesday.

He said it could be Sunday or later before it becomes clear if the operation known as a "top-kill" is successful. "This job is a very critical operation. If it takes longer, we will let it take longer. We are not going to rusk it because it is too important.  And as long as we believe it will work, we will stay with it.  We do not have a set timeline to say, 'if we have not achieved a certain thing in 24 hours, we are going to quit', that is not the way we look at this operation. So as long as we believe it can be successful, we will continue to go," he said.

There are no reports of a "top-kill" ever being attempted so deep, at about 1,500 meters underwater.  There also has never been a similar operation watched this closely.  

Under pressure from the U.S. Congress, BP has made available a live video transmission of what is going on.  Several thousand websites are showing the feed.  

At the press conference in Louisiana late Friday, Suttles underlined the difficulty of the task for BP's engineers. "We are doing things that are very difficult to do.  They are on the bottom of the seabed and you can imagine. We will look at a particular job and think, 'we can perform it in two hours', sometimes it takes four.  Some of the jobs that we think we can do in half a day take a day because we are using these robotic submarines. People cannot go down there and do this and many of the things we have done have never been done before," he said.

Scientists said the video seemed to indicate BP was gaining ground, as mud now seemed to be coming out of the well, rather than mostly oil or gas, but they also said it was too early to tell if the operation would succeed.

The U.S. government estimates between 70 and 150 million liters of oil have already gushed out since the Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion on April 20. The rupture initially killed 11 workers and is now causing environmental degradation in surrounding waters and coastlines.

President Barack Obama has said BP will be held accountable for damages.  The U.S. president, who inspected areas of the Gulf coast Friday, also said the largest clean-up in U.S. history was underway.

You May Like

Photogallery Americans Celebrate Thanksgiving With Feasts, Festivities

Holiday traditions include turkey dinners, 'turkey trots,' American-style football and New York parade with giant balloons More

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

With two years left in term, analysts say, president has less to lose by taking conversation on race further More

Video Italian Espresso Expands Into Space

When Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti headed for the ISS, her countrymen worried how she would survive six months drinking only instant coffee More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
South Africa Sees Male Circumcision as Way to Reduce HIV Infectionsi
X
November 28, 2014 3:31 PM
South Africa remains plagued by AIDS despite massive government and NGO efforts on prevention and life-sustaining Anti-Retro-Viral programs. But the country has opened up another front to reduce new HIV infections: promoting circumcision. Emilie Iob reports for VOA News from a pioneering circumcision center in Orange Farm, Johannesburg.
Video

Video South Africa Sees Male Circumcision as Way to Reduce HIV Infections

South Africa remains plagued by AIDS despite massive government and NGO efforts on prevention and life-sustaining Anti-Retro-Viral programs. But the country has opened up another front to reduce new HIV infections: promoting circumcision. Emilie Iob reports for VOA News from a pioneering circumcision center in Orange Farm, Johannesburg.
Video

Video To Make A Living, Nairobi Street Vendors Face Legal Hurdles, Physical Violence

The Nairobi City Council has been accused of brutality in dealing with hawkers in the Central Business District - in order to stop them from illegally selling their wares on the streets. Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

Throughout the crisis in Ferguson, Missouri, President Barack Obama has urged calm, restraint and respect for the rule of law. But the events in Ferguson have prompted him to call — more openly than he has before — for profound changes to end the racism and distrust that he believes still exists between whites and blacks in the United States. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Online Magazine Gets Kids Discussing Big Questions

Teen culture in America is often criticized for being superficial. But an online magazine has been encouraging some teenagers to explore deeper issues, and rewarding their efforts. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky went to this year’s Kidspirit awards ceremony in New York.
Video

Video US Community Kicks Off Thanksgiving With Parade

Thursday is Thanksgiving in the United States, a holiday whose roots go back to the country's earliest days as a British colony. One way Americans celebrate the occasion is with parades. Anush Avetisyan takes us to one such event on the day before Thanksgiving near Washington, where a community's diversity is on display. Joy Wagner narrates
Video

Video Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Change

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Mali Attempts to Shut Down Ebola Transmission Chain

Senegal and Nigeria were able to stop small Ebola outbreaks by closely monitoring those who had contact with the sick person and quickly isolating anyone with symptoms. Mali is now scrambling to do the same. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Mali on what the country is doing to shut down the chain of transmission.
Video

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests at a Crossroads

New public opinion polls in Hong Kong indicate declining support for pro-democracy demonstrations after weeks of street protests. VOA’s Bill Ide in Guangzhou and Pros Laput in Hong Kong spoke with protesters and observers about whether demonstrators have been too aggressive in pushing for change.
Video

Video US Immigration Relief Imminent for Mixed-Status Families

Tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the Washington, D.C., area may benefit from a controversial presidential order announced this week. It's not a path to citizenship, as some activists hoped. But it will allow more immigrants who arrived as children or who have citizen children, to avoid deportation and work legally. VOA's Victoria Macchi talks with one young man who benefited from an earlier presidential order, and whose parents may now benefit after years of living in fear.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.

All About America

AppleAndroid