"Could another deep water -- or even shallow water -- oil drilling disaster be looming ahead? Experts warn it certainly could happen again.
The Deepwater Horizon catastrophe, they say, highlights flaws in the drilling industry's main defense against oil and gas explosions -- the blowout preventer, which is supposed to shut down an oil and gas well if something goes wrong. Oil companies have treated such devices as virtually fail-safe.
'They're certainly not fail-safe because they didn't close this well,' said Paul Bommer, a petroleum engineering professor at the University of Texas at Austin. 'If they had been 100 percent fail-safe they would have sealed, they would have closed.,'
There have been numerous rig blowouts, including a large gusher in the Timor Sea off the coast of Western Australia last year. And a growing number of blowouts in the past decade have caused offshore oil drilling to become sloppier."