Feds suggest new BOP guidelines. Opt-out of the BP class-action? Be careful, that might not work. LSU and others get funding for mental health programs related to effects of the spill. Kurt Mix wants to travel. Calls to prosecute BP execs.
You are in the current Gulf Watchers BP Catastrophe - AUV #588. AUV #587 is here.
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As Big Oil will not be constrained by the dangers of drilling in extreme environments, for now our only hope is that some form (even the slightest) of regulation be in place to lessen the possibility (or rather, inevitability) of another massive blowout.
Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar today released plans to for more stringent guidelines and more effective equipment to quickly stop the flow of oil, when - not if - another blowout occurs.
Salazar says a more effective BOP has always been the goal, after the blowout preventer on the Deepwater Horizon failed to work due to an off-center drill pipe.
“That was one of the areas of intense focus during those days of the Gulf oil spill, when we were trying to figure out for so long what was happening with respect to the BOP,” Salazar said at an Interior Department forum on blowout preventers meant to help regulators developing the new mandates.But all the sensors and gauges on the planet can't help, if the Big Oil powers that be ignore the information...
From the Dept. of Interior/BOEMRE investigation:
Some time between 5:17 p.m. and 5:27 p.m., Jimmy Harrell (Transocean), Robert Kaluza (BP), Donald Vidrine (BP) and other members of the drill crew discussed the first negative test. According to Kaluza, this discussion about the pressure on the drill pipe was “long.” Kaluza stated that Jason Anderson, Transocean assistant toolpusher, explained that the pressure was due to a “bladder effect,” and that “this happens every time.” Brian Morel, a BP drilling engineer who had previously raised concerns about Kaluza’s abilities to execute procedures, was not on the rig at the time (he had departed hours earlier) to be consulted on the drill pipe pressure and other anomalies.Convinced of the necessity of doing something even if it is wrong, Deputy Interior Secretary David Hayes says the Department guidelines will focus on four points:
Well, Dave, we agree with you on your four points. How about a fifth point... something like, say....when the guys on the deck tell you (repeatedly) that the sucker is about to blow everything to hell and kingdom come, how about you LISTEN to them?
Roger McCarthy, a member of the National Academy of Engineering panel that probed the Deepwater Horizon disaster, said “the industry had plenty of warnings” that blowout preventers had problems shearing even under “benign conditions” before the 2010 oil spill.But until that level of capability is reached, how about just not drilling where total catastrophe is the result of an equipment design failure, coupled with speed and greed...like sub-sub zero temperatures, and a mile-and-a-half of water?
Sorry...lost my head there for a minute. Not drill? Never happen...
BP has basically agreed to (this figure is actually an estimate) a $7.8 billion civil liability settlement from the Gulf spill. But there seem to be some secrets in the wording of the settlement, which could let BP off the hook for plaintiffs that decide to opt-out and leave the class-action phase and go it alone against the oil giant.
The problem is the opt-outs. At least it would be a problem for the plaintiffs, and not for BP. (So what else is new?)
The potential landmine is opt-outs. In a settlement of a class action, class members can reject the deal and decide to go it alone. Defendants have to be prepared for the possibility that a high volume of opt-out litigation will undermine the goal of global resolution. BP certainly is prepared: Its settlement agreement with plaintiffs claiming economic and property damages includes a provision that gives BP the right to terminate the deal if the total of opt-outs "exceeds a number agreed to by the parties."U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier has granted preliminary approval to the settlement between BP and thousands of private plaintiffs, and has set a hearing date for November 8 for final approval, if he determines to grant such. Plaintiffs who are part of the class action have until August 31 to file objections to the settlement, with a date of October 1 to opt out.
Louisiana State University and others acquire funding to for mental health issues related to the Gulf spill.
LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans has been provisionally awarded a $14.4 million grant over five years from the $36 million in total funding through the BP Oil Spill Settlement Agreement to fund mental and behavioral health treatment and longer-term supportive services to people and communities affected by the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill. Dr. Howard Osofsky, Professor and Chairman of Psychiatry, and Dr. Joy Osofsky, Professor and Head of the Division of Pediatric Mental Health at LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans, are the project leaders of the Mental and Behavioral Health Capacity Project in Louisiana.Oh, well. Hope it helps. I would think everyone's mental health would be just fine if shrimpers and fishermen could depend on a good catch, decent physical health, and jobs for their children and grandchildren. But that's just me.
A federal magistrate has scheduled a hearing on a former BP engineer’s request for permission to travel freely throughout the U.S. while he awaits a trial on charges he deleted text messages about the oil company’s response to the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
Antonia Juhasz, in a special to the Press-Register says that BP executives should face criminal charges for the deaths of Gordon Jones, Dewey Revette, Jason Anderson, Shane Roshto, Stephen Curtis, Blair Manuel, Karl Kleppinger, Adam Weise, Don Clark, Roy Kemp and Aaron Dale Burkeen, all killed in the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon, and the US Justice Department should apply the charge of manslaughter at minimum.
Juhasz also cites Dr. David Uhlmann, former head of the U.S. Department of Justice Environmental Crimes Section, who argues in the Michigan Law Review for criminal charges against BP, including manslaughter. He cites Title 18 Section 1115 of the U.S. Criminal Code, known as the “Seaman’s Manslaughter Statute” which holds companies, executives, managers and employees of vessels liable for fines and imprisonment for deaths occurring on their rigs.
Jeanne Grasso of Blank Rome LLP, a maritime and environmental law expert, says that in applying the statute, “it is important to note that intent is not an element of the offense and it is unnecessary to show that the acts or omissions that caused the loss of life were willful or intentional.” Rather, she explains, simple negligence is enough to secure a conviction.I still want to see Tony H. forced to perp-walk off his yacht. I can dream, can't I?
And last, I submit a couple of items... Not going to do a story; just go and read and/or watch.
BP Coverup. They do it all the time.
Previous Gulf Watcher diaries:
|5-08-12 04:00 PM||Gulf Watchers Tuesday - BP Lied - Warning To Well Leader 1 Hour Before Blowout - BP Catastrophe AUV #587||peraspera|
|4-24-12 03:00 PM||Gulf Watchers Tuesday - Criminal Charges and Angry Shrimp Processors - BP Catastrophe AUV #586||Lorinda Pike|
Previous motherships and ROV's from this extensive live blog effort may be found here.
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