BP didn’t cut corners on safety

THE US commission investigating the largest oil spill in American history said yesterday its preliminary investigation had found no evidence to support the accusation that it happened because BP and its partners cut costs to save money.

The White House commission instead blamed the oil spill on a series of misjudgments by employees working on-site.

“To date we have not seen a single instance where a human being made a conscious decision to favor dollars over safety,” the commission’s chief counsel Fred Bartlit said blowing apart accusations that had been levelled at BP during the summer.

In fact, the commission panel agreed with around 90 per cent of the findings of BP’s own internal investigation of the accident released earlier this year.

BP’s report laid much of the blame for the accident on its drilling partners, Transocean.

Bartlit said BP’s well design was not inherently faulty, although it did have some impact on the drilling project’s operations.

But the panel’s investigators concluded BP took unnecessary risks as it tried to temporarily abandon the Macondo well, a finding BP disputed.

Over the summer several US politicians accused BP and other companies involved in drilling the well of sacrificing safety for financial gain, an accusation BP has always denied.