An underwater robot accidentally bumped a venting system in the Gulf, forcing BP (NYSE:BP) to remove a cap that had been capturing the oil, releasing more oil into the Gulf waters.
The reason for removing the cap after the robotic submarine hit it was because gas started rising through the vent, which carried warm water down to prevent the buildup of hardened crystals, which could form on the cap and disrupt the system.
While some reports said the oil was being released unabated into the Gulf, that's not true, as Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen said the flow of oil has increased, but it's not a "totally unconstrained discharge."
The second system installed, which is used to burn off oil is reportedly still operating.
The system that is down does capture the most oil at this time.
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