Transocean Report Pins Gulf Oil Spill Blame on BP

June 22, 2011

Transocean Ltd , the owner of the oil drilling rig that exploded and sank in the Gulf of Mexico last year, blamed BP Plcin a report released Wednesday for decisions that led to the disastrous oil spill.

Transocean and BP are locked in a legal battle over which company was responsible for the worst-ever maritime oil spill and the deaths of the 11 workers on the drilling rig.

The report issued by Transocean said BP failed to properly assess the risks around the troubled well and did not communicate the danger to Transocean.

BP also used a poor well design which which led to the failure of cement around the well casing, allowing gas to escape and reach the rig, the report said.

(Reporting by Matt Daily, editing by Gerald E. McCormick)

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau blamed a disc failure caused by a manufacturing defect in an oil feed pipe for the incident over Batam island, Indonesia, shortly after take-off from Singapore last November.

Qantas immediately grounded its A380 fleet, forcing it to pull its biggest aircraft from some of its most lucrative routes for over three weeks during the southern hemisphere summer travel season.

The airline scrambled to replace potentially faulty engines and even pulled some new engines from Airbus production lines, causing a delivery delays of future A380s.

Qantas shares initially jumped as much as 3 percent but eased back to end 0.3 percent higher as investors digested the airline’s warning that its international operations have to be restructured to save profitability.

Qantas said it expects its full-year earnings to come in close to market expectations but faced heavy losses on international routes and it continued to grapple with rising fuel prices and flight disruptions.

($1 = 0.944 Australian Dollars) ($1 = 0.618 British Pounds)

(Editing by Ed Davies and Anshuman Daga)

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