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BP and the Gulf Oil Spill (A) and (B)
Dan Marques, Jonathan Kim, John Mikols, and James S. O'Rourke
University of Notre Dame, USA
Volume 4: 2011, pp. 79-96; ABSTRACT
Case A: An April 20, 2010 explosion on board the Deepwater Horizon offshore oil-drilling platform killed 11 workers, injured 17 and triggered a leak that spilled more than 206 million gallons of oil over 665 miles of coastline and 4,000 square miles of fishing waters. This case discusses the events that led to the disaster and oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. It also outlines key figures within BP's organization and how they factored into the long and difficult corporate communications process. Case B: In May, 2010, President Obama created the BP Oil Commission to find the causes of the disaster. The commission published its report the next January, citing a series of mishaps, most of which could be traced to failures within management for BP and Halliburton. Safeguards meant to prevent a well blowout were also foiled by a lack of communication between all parties involved in the exploratory drilling project. A timeline provides an overall view of the three-month saga.