New Orleans, La. – National Incident Commander Thad Allen says that before mud and cement are pumped into the broken well from the bottom, he wants assurance that the cap and blow-out preventer on top can handle the pressure.
"There's nobody that wants to have this happen quicker than I do. But there's nobody that wants to incur more risk to this operation, because when we finish this thing we need to have a stake in the heart of this well."
New Orleans, La. – Ewell Smith is hard at work as executive director of the Louisiana Seafood and Promotion Marketing Board. He says shrimpers are facing a tough sell.
"The brand of Louisiana seafood has been beaten up pretty badly by this oil spill. And we're going to need some help, we're going to need some serious help in terms of dollars from BP to rebuild the brand of Louisiana seafood. It took Exxon -- after the Exxon Valdez, it took Alaska five years to rebuild their brand."
New Orleans, La. – National Incident Commander Thad Allen is ordering more testing and options on handling problems that may develop when mud and cement are pumped into the broken well from the bottom. One option may be replacing the blow-out preventer now on top of the well that was plugged with mud and cement last week
New Orleans, La. – National Incident Commander Thad Allen says he's ordering BP to come up with a plan if pumping during the bottom kill cranks up pressure on the capping system holding back the oil from the top.
"We're still dealing with part of the well that we can't see, and only know from pressure readings and external indications what the condition is and we will not know until we actually intercept the well."
New Orleans, La. – National Incident Commander Thad Allen says there's a chance that cement pumped down the well could have come back up the outer casing.
"We may be the victims of our own success here, in that once they looked at the results of the cementing from the static kill from the top, they raised the question of whether or not the cement that entered the reservoir might have actually gone back up the annulus and sealed that."
New Orleans, La. – National Incident Commander Thad Allen says pressure testing at the well shows something is blocking oil from coming back up the reservoir. He says it's probably cement pumped in from the top that somehow got pushed back inside.
"What we don't want to do is somehow upset what we've done, which is a really good cementing job that was done through the top kill."
New Orleans, La. – National Incident Commander Thad Allen says once tropical storms subside at the end of this week, more testing is planned for the plugged up well. Engineers want to make sure it can take another shot of mud and cement pumped through the bottom. Equipment at the seafloor is vital to several top-level investigations into what caused the Deepwater Horizon rig to explode.
New Orleans, La. – The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has reopened more federal waters off the Florida Panhandle to fishing. NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco says inspectors have been sniffing seafood samples for traces of chemical dispersants, and chemical testing found no oil.
"The Food and Drug Administration has indicated that the compounds that are in the dispersants are not a concern for human health, human safety."