Wednesday, May 26, 2010

BP greed

Watching the BP live feed reminded me of the crane game

Watching BP engineers working on the BOP last night I had wondered if they were going to do a video feed blackout but I guess their PR guys thought better. I watched off and on for a couple of hours while they unbolted a piece from the blow out preventer. I see now why it's taking so long. It took well over an hour for them to unscrew four bolts and remove the piece. I don't think that we'll be seeing any deepwater drilling in the near future but if there is they'll really need some design changes.
It's now been established that what got them into this mess was cutting corners on the process. They were too hasty to get the rig up and running to do the job right. And just how much money would they have saved in the process. Figures I'm hearing were about $6 million a day. Multiply that by 7 to 14 days and you get a max of $84 million. Then you stop to consider what this is going to cost in the long run (in the tens of billions) and that 84 million doesn't sound like a lot. But who has the guts to stand up and say "something is wrong we can not proceed." Because I know what the answer to that would be. "You're going to be responsible for holding up a miltibillion dollar project?"

I've personnely witnessed this corporate attitude before in my own profession. It starts simple enough. Save money and cut costs becomes the mantra. It will work for a while but then at some point you end up with a rogue company that ignores all safety rules because you know safety costs money that could be going to the bottom line. I recall working for one company and noticed that we were picking up workers left and right from another. Then the truth started to come out that the other company was so bad with safety their workers were leaving.
And this is how it really works in corporate America. Upper management puts pressure on middle management for increased productivity and greater profits. Middle management puts the screws to lower management who inturn lays it on the worker. The worker has two options. Either do the job as they were told or get replaced. And when the poop hits the fan it's the worker who takes the blame. Supervisors always lie and demand evidence. In the case of BP it was upper management who told their underlings to go ahead and do the job wrong but you think they'll see the inside of a jail cell?


BBC said...

Why shucks, I think it's right nice of BP, sending everyone on the gulf free oil, all they have to do it scoop it up and convert it to gas for their rigs. They may have so much free oil that they may even send some to the East coast of Florida. I suppose the moonshiners can figure out how to make some gasoline.

the Obama administration's disclosure that the United States has stockpiled 5,113 nuclear warheads and "several thousand" more retired warheads awaiting the junk pile.

Wow !! If I had that many I would whip the worlds ass and make everyone be good. Everyone that was left anyway.

Tim said...

Nothing will stop them from drilling I fear. Making money always seems to be the bottom line and screw safety and anything else.

Demeur said...

Making gasoline in the back yard Billy. You don't think the neighbors would complain?

Tim if we can make them pay for the clean up plus the increase in their insurance rates and any new requirments I think it will be too expensive to do off shore drilling.

BBC said...

The neighbors didn't complain about moonshiners, it's where they got their booze from. So why would they complain about where they get their gas from?

Randal Graves said...

I'm sorry, but if you throw corporate heads in jail, you'd be throwing away too much talent. Who would run things, middle management or, gasp, workers? C'mon, your social betters are better for a reason.

an average patriot said...

I noticed this morning that Rove said this gulf oil gusher is Obama's Katrina. I have to agree but Bush and Cheney created it and like everything else they did, this too will be much worse. Newt Gingrich accused Obama of dereliction of duty while Bush and Cheney are guilty of dereliction.

Remember Bush and Cheney's secret White House meetings with the so called energy czars? Remember, the rest of the world by law must use an acoustic valve in case of emergency that would have prevented this.

Since oil ran this country Bush and Cheney decided at 1/2 million per valve it was too expensive for oil companies as profit and cutting corners was their only goal not the people and the environment.

BBC said...

the rest of the world by law must use an acoustic valve in case of emergency that would have prevented this.

I didn't know that. In fact I'm a little confused by your statement, a search showed me that an acoustic valve is a blowout preventer valve and there was a blowout preventer valve on the wellhead. It just didn't work for some reason.

Ranch Chimp said...

Even though I dont know much about this stuff as you do, I buy the fact as you say that this was perhap's done to set up fast and cut corner's, maximize profit's etc. Why? .... Because I know how alot of these ole boyz think.

Short story: I was working pre- press dept of a printing plant once (Dallas suburbia), which has some real hazardous chem's to begin with (it was a trade of mine for year's) and this place I found out was dumping it's fixer from film down the drain (not to mention they were throwing away silver as well, because it get's in the fixer from the film, so they were throwing away money as well, the dumbasses), and was doing this for year's before I worked there, they also I seen later were paying off inspector's from everyone from the fire dept, to enviromental inspection's, I actually witnessed the cash exchanges of hand's, it was done so openly. I told the owner one day that dumping the fixer down the drain is a problem, his response was, believe it or not ...."But were using PVC piping Thomas, not copper" as if he thought I was concerned over the plumbing .... geeeeez ... I told him and his partner of the enviromental hazzard's, they just first looked at me in shock to even bring up something like this, they have alway's I reckoned just thought of me as a good ole boy, and this didnt go over very good to say the least, yet I was able to get them to change on it, I reckon out of fear that I may talk.

Later Guy ..........