According to a Saturday statement by retired Coast Guard Adm. Thad W. Allen, the top official overseeing the oil spill response, the petering out of the Tropical Storm Bonnie during the weekend brought the workers back to work on a relief well at the site of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
Saying that the threat of a fierce storm had forced officials to evacuate personnel as well as equipment from the spill site and farther inland, Allen added that the storm had set back the work in the gulf by 7-9 days, and that the “static kill” procedure will commence in August first week.
The “static kill” procedure will essentially comprise the pumping of heavy drilling mud and concrete into the well from the top; with the relief boring into the exploded Macondo well, nearly 2.5 miles beneath the seabed.
While Allen had said on Saturday, that work on the static kill will likely commence on Tuesday, he apparently revised that estimate Sunday after his meeting with BP officials.
According to the information forwarded by Kent Wells, BP’s Senior VP of exploration and production, in an update on the BP Web site, the oil leak might be successfully plugged by the static kill procedure alone. Wells added that as BP continues the drilling of the relief well, it will become increasingly clearer whether the static kill will be enough.