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American Opinion: On the Gulf oil spill

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An excerpts from recent editorials in newspapers in the United States:

From The Associated Press

On the Gulf oil spill:

Like other independent investigators examining the Deepwater Horizon disaster, the National Academy of Engineering is pointing fingers mostly at BP -- joining the emerging consensus that the oil giant's errors greatly contributed to the explosion and subsequent oil spill.

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In an interim report, prepared jointly with the National Research Council, members of the academy said BP failed to properly assess risks and chose less expensive processes and equipment that led to the disaster.

The academy is hardly the first one to point to those mistakes. Its report did not identify which specific errors may have caused the explosion at the rig. But the engineers placed the responsibility for many of the missteps squarely on BP's shoulders.

They cited critical errors by BP, including changing key supervisors days before critical well procedures, choosing to line the well with fewer barriers against natural gas seepage and fewer safety devices than recommended, declining important tests that could have warned of impending danger and removing heavy drilling mud prematurely.

The most critical error, according to members of the academy, was the misinterpretation of key tests of the well's pressure just hours before the April 20 explosion. ...

So much for BP's self-proclaimed "culture of safety."

-- The Times-Picayune,

New Orleans

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