For the first time, BP will attempt to completely stop the spewing BP oilrig in the Gulf of Mexico. On Tuesday, the oil company prepared to conduct pressure tests with a new, tighter-fitting cap to see if they can stop the
leak. Kent Wells, a senior vice president of the company, said at a briefing that the installation of the new cap was completed Monday evening. “It really went extremely well,” he said. “But we know that the job’s not over
yet.” First, they must test the cap for 48 hours. If tests show that the pressure is rising and holding with no significant damage to the casing pipe that runs to 13,000 feet below the seafloor, BP could decide to leave the valves closed, which would mean the well is shut. Tests could also reveal pressures that are lower than expected, Mr. Wells said, which would mean the well is damaged and that oil and gas are still leaking into the surrounding rock.