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Oil Expert Cavnar: "They know this well can't be shut in for a long period of time"

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Uploaded on Jul 16, 2010

This is Only a Test, MSNBC, July 15, 2010:

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CAVNAR: I think they said 8,000 or 9,000 pounds which concerns me about the wellhead they talked about yesterday. If it levels off at a lower pressure, they've got a leak down below. If it goes up and then breaks down, then they've caused some damage. That's what they're going to be looking for.

MSNBC: What do they do in either eventuality? How does this turn up?

CAVNAR: They've got to open it up and get this oil flowing back to the surface through the risers that have been set in place so it doesn't leak underground blowout farther down or possibly pot surface in some of this upper damage.

MSNBC: How confident are you in their having the equipment that's needed to fully examine the well bore and the seafloor for damage? Are they just going by those pressure measurements?

CAVNAR: I think they're doing a pretty thorough evaluation. I've been watching the rovs. They've been flying those real low on the bottom of the well. They've got others focused on other parts of the well. So they're watching it pretty closely.

MSNBC: As we mentioned, admiral allen says it remains likely they'll resume containment using the cap. Is there a way to read anything into that or is he hedging his bets?

CAVNAR: What i read into that is they know this well can't be shut in for a long period of time. Plus, they don't want this well to be shut in while they're trying to complete that relief well that's just a few feet away. That creates bottom hole pressure that's difficult to kill once they get there.

MSNBC: Is it any clearer to you today than yesterday about why this sequence occurred in the way it has? The tests and the suspension initially of the tests and the resumpti resumption, and the tests were going to be six-hour intervals and then shut off? It sounded more than ? a little ad-hoc.

CAVNAR: It's clearly been on the fly. there's a lot more discussion behind the scenes obviously with the government and bp team than what they're disclosing to the public. What i've learned in this whole experience, if you get a long on period of silence, something's going on. I think that's a lot of what happened today. Plus, they've had the leaks in the stack they've had to fix.

MSNBC: Bob Cavnar, thank you.



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