New Orleans, La. – The hearings will be conducted by the Minerals Management Service and the U.S. Coast Guard. They're trying to figure out what triggered the April 20th explosion on the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig 40 miles off the Louisiana coast. Eleven workers are missing and presumed dead. Among the witnesses are the master, engineer and chief mate of a cargo ship that was in the area when the rig blew apart. The vessel picked survivors, arranged medical transport for the injured and got the rest back to shore. Also set to testify is a Coast Guard search and rescue specialist, and inspectors for the minerals service. A joint report will be prepared after the two days of hearings.
For NPR News, I'm Eileen Fleming in New Orleans.