Equipment Leak Hampers BP’s Latest Effort to Stop Oil Spill

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Work continues on equipment at the site of the BP oil well leak in the Gulf of Mexico, in this image captured from a BP live video feed July 14, 2010. BP Plc on Wednesday started a crucial test on its ruptured oil well in the Gulf of Mexico that it hopes will lead to halting the flow of crude that has polluted the sea and shoreline since April.


These days, oil spill news seems to repeat itself — BP delays test after test after yet another setback. The latest delay in stopping the oil spill? A leak, this time in equipment.

The equipment with a leak is called a choke line, and it is reportedly essential. BP must fix this leak before it can run crucial tests on the well itself. There is no timetable for fixing the new leak.

Once the equipment is fixed, this test on the well will determine if the well can be contained, either by siphoning oil to the surface or closing the stack entirely. If successful, it would be a big step in stopping the spill. Even so, CNN expects cleanup in the Gulf to take years.