Did BP fail to account for overpressured sand?

A thought occured to me that the blowout preventers that failed in the BP Gulf of Mexico oil disaster might have been insufficiently robust for an unexpected overpressured sand horizon. Since overpressured zones in the Gulf are not that uncommon, it would be strange if such an occurance were not anticipated. One would expect that maybe the number of overpressured horizons would increase as one moves further offshore.

Granted that many overpressured zones are shales with little porosity and permeability and thus can be handled with little extra difficulty. But at that depth (about 5000 feet water) it seems that the extra precautions wold have been worth it ( if it was indeed the failure of BP to anticipate an overpressured sand).

Just a thought and no way to prove it.

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About P. W. Fox

P. W. Fox, a.k.a. Wayne Howard, born in Mississippi, grew up in Nevada, Japan and Guam, returning to Mississippi where he attended high school and college in Mississippi where he received a degree in chemistry from Mississippi State University, and after working as a plant chemist for two years, he returned to the university, for graduate study in geology and geochemistry both at Mississippi State and the University of Texas at Dallas. On leaving school, he worked for a number of years in the oil and gas industry in Texas before moving to Oregon, where he has lived for the last 22 years. He has always been drawn to fiction writing and won a story writing contest at the age of nine. He began but later abandoned a science fiction novel while an undergraduate at Mississippi State. In recent years he began a more deliberate and sustained writing effort, producing short plays, poems, short stories and meditations as well as lyrics for choral pieces. Current projects include a science fiction novel and a children’s story.
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