PAST 24 HOURS
Admiral Allen Provides an Update on the BP Oil Spill Response
National Incident Commander Admiral Thad Allen provided a briefing to inform the American public and answer questions on the administration-wide response to the BP oil spill. A full transcript is available here.
Admiral Allen reported on the progress of laying the final casing run in preparation for cementing in the relief well and reiterated the administration’s commitment to cleaning up impacted shorelines.
“We continue to survey the entire area for tar balls, any type of oil. We continue to replace boom that was damaged during the recent storm and pick up absorbent boom that has oil on it and replace that with clean boom and we’ll continue to do that,” he said. “Our forces are standing by to attack oil wherever it may be located.”
Drilling of the Relief Well Continues
Development Driller III is in the process of laying the final casing run, a necessary step before beginning the static diagnostics test—pumping mud and cement in through the top of the well—which will provide more information about well integrity and ultimately improves the probability of success for the relief well. The Q4000 is on-scene and ready for the static diagnostics test. Once the casing is set, the cementing of the relief well is expected to begin within four to five days. Development Driller II will hold operations and await results of the DDIII relief well.
Development Driller III has drilled the first relief well to a depth of 17,864 feet below the Gulf surface and Development Driller II has drilled the second relief well—a redundancy measure taken at the direction of the administration—to a depth of 15,963 feet below the surface.
Seismic and Acoustic Testing Continue to Ensure the Integrity of the Wellhead
In order to ensure the integrity of the wellhead and search for and respond to anomalies, the research vessel Geco Topaz and the NOAA Ship Henry R. Bigelow are conducting seismic and acoustic tests around the wellhead—part of continued efforts to use the best scientific tools available in response to the BP oil spill. The pressure in the wellhead continues to rise, demonstrating that it has integrity, and is currently at 6,980 pounds per square inch.
FWS Personnel Continue Wildlife Rescue and Recovery Missions Across the Region
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service excavated 145 Loggerhead sea turtle eggs from nests at the St. Vincent and St. Marks National Wildlife Refuges in
From the Houma, La., Incident Command Post, 263 field personnel, 84 vessels and four helicopters and one float plane participated in reconnaissance and wildlife rescue and recovery missions. From the
By the Numbers to Date:
*The decrease in boom numbers since yesterday is due to the recovery of some displaced boom in