BP blowout preventer to be replaced

Published 12:00 am Saturday, August 7, 2010

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The government’s point man on the Gulf oil spill says engineers will probably remove the failed blowout preventer and replace it to secure the site permanently.

Retired Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen told The Associated Press on Friday that it is likely the Justice Department will want the failed blowout preventer as evidence as it investigates.

Crews have pumped mud and cement into the top of the blown-out well to plug it up. The plan has been to pump filler into the bottom later this month through a relief well.

BP says that “bottom kill” will be done before the blowout preventer is replaced.

Allen also says he plans to remain national incident commander for the “foreseeable future” but indicated a government transition plan is in the works.