New Orleans, La. – National Incident Commander Thad Allen says BP and government teams say putting a "sleeve" under the new blowout preventer should make it capable of handling one million pounds of pressure. He says it's vital that the space around the well bore can withstand the pumping process.
"That would allow us to go ahead and proceed more quickly without having to cement the top of the annulus. And based on a revised schedule from BP, we might be able to accelerate going ahead and finishing out the relief well."
Allen isn't setting a date for starting the last phase of drilling into the broken well, but has said it could be killed later this month.
For NPR News, I'm Eileen Fleming in New Orleans.