We further posit that it was this detonated explosion that triggered the second, more powerful oil blowout by breaching the base of this well below 18,000 ft bsl and allowing high-pressure oil from the Macondo reservoir to gush directly into the well. It was this detonated explosion at shallow depth that started the chain of events that led to the uncontrollable massive oil spill that poisoned the Gulf with oil from the Macondo reservoir. The first gas blowout, which set the DWH rig on fire April 20, was caused by gas influx from the shallow gas-saturated weak subformation (GWSF) zone. After that initial gas surge into the well, the shallow section of the well (down to 10,000 ft bml) appeared to have stabilized into a constant-flow equilibrium with the GWSF zone.
At that point there was no immediate danger of another gas blowout from within the well, neither from the shallow section with a stable incoming leak from the GWSF zone nor from the deep end o the well which had not been breached by virtue of being suppressed under heavy mud weight. Well A, which is located 720 ft southeast of the blown well BE crater, had been spewing gas from the same GWSF zone since 2010 February and had not been plugged, a violation of MMS regulations regarding abandoned wells. At the time of the first gas blowout on April 20 until at least April 24, well A and well B were left abandoned and had no man-made connection (riser pipe or any pipeline) to well BE or to BOP#1 sitting on well BE’s wellhead. The second detonated explosion, however, did aggravate the gas leaks at both wells A and B, due to the inter-connecting faults and the same GWSF occurrence at all three wells.
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