Top Kill

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On April 20th 2010 there was an explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil-rig, in the Gulf of Mexico, in which 11 men were vaporised and 17 injured. 205.8 million gallons of crude oil proceeded to leak into the Ocean from a broken wellhead, 5 miles below the surface.

Given there are more than 3000 such well heads in the Gulf, TOP KILL follows subsequent imagined events on a similar drilling platform, CLEARWATER VENTURE demonstrating just how cutting corners could lead to calamity.

When news of the 'burst' reaches the Florida shoreline, tensions rise and tempers flare. As the clock ticks, TOP KILL follows the personal, political and commercial dilemmas facing the main players in this catastrophe; the new biggest oil spill in history.

Managers, engineers and operators, implement a series of methods to try and stop the spill, 5 miles below the surface. They start with inadequate repairs to the Blowout Preventer, using containment caps and Junk Shots, until at last deciding on a desperate static TOP KILL which finally seals the leak. The story is one of action, high risk and increasing pressure as they become engulfed in crude-oil which spreads around them. A hard edged, driving drama of events and personalities dealing with a man made sub-oceanic Krakatoa which is way beyond the control of our available technology.

In 'Top Kill' by Mike Walker

Produced by - Eoin O'Callaghan.