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Dudley to head Gulf spill team as accident sees oil flow increase

BP chief executive Tony Hayward yesterday handed over the day-to-day running of the firm’s clean up of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill disaster to managing director Bob Dudley, BP said.

Dudley will become president and chief executive of BP’s newly-formed Gulf Coast Restoration Organisation “effective immediately”.

But as Dudley took the reins oil gushed largely unchecked from BP’s ruptured Gulf of Mexico well after an undersea robot collided with a cap intended to capture leaking crude.

BP could not confirm when it expects to replace the cap – its most successful containment device to date. The oil company’s shares, which have lost £33bn since the explosion, were roughly flat in London at 333.5p and up one per cent in New York at $30.02.