BP announced that oil had stopped flowing into the Gulf after engineers closed three valves on the new capping stack that was placed earlier this week. Engineers will continue to monitor the pressure within the well to determine if the cap can hold the oil without leaking from other locations along the pipe. The results of these integrity tests will provide BP with insight into how to proceed with their efforts to seal the leaking well.
However, National Incident Commander Thad Allen reminded the public that the cap was not designed to be a permanent fix – it will allow four vessels to contain the oil and assure redundancy in the event of severe weather.
BP hopes two relief wells will provide a permanent solution; the first well is within 5 feet of its target and should be completed sometime in August.