General manager says relief well expected to be completed in August is 'end point' for efforts to stop spill

Oil giant BP has said it is responsible for the Gulf oil spill, but now the company seems to be reserving the right to blame someone else.

Fox News' Chris Wallace questioned the managing director of BP, Bob Dudley, about the company's poor safety record. While taking full responsibility for the spill, Dudley indicated they may shift that responsibility in the future.

"We have had this accident in the Gulf, which we're taking full responsibility for. We're not blaming anyone yet for it. The investigation of this will determine the causes," Dudley said.

His comments come a day after the British oil concern announced its latest effort to plug the leak, the so-called "top kill" procedure, had failed.

"Over the last decade, It's fair to say that BP has had a poor safety record," Wallace said. "In fact, just over the last three years according to OSHA, the government's workplace safety agency, BP had 760 what are called 'egregious, willful safety violations.' Two other oil companies were next with just eight. How do you explain that, sir?" asked Wallace.

"It primarily goes back to an incident we had in Texas about a half a decade ago where tragedy and explosion of refinery in Houston. Then we've had an issue in Alaska as well," said Dudley.

"In the last three years, the chief executive of the company Tony Hayward has brought in a program top to bottom where we focus on safe and reliable operations and ingrained it in the culture of the company," he said.

"Forgive me, Mr. Dudley, that hasn't worked too well, has it?" Wallace said.

According to news reports, BP is now preparing for its next effort to plug the leak, which is estimated to have gushed between 18 million and 40 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico since April 20. AP reports:

Yet another mix of risky undersea robot maneuvers, containment devices and longshot odds is being prepared to fight the uncontrolled gusher feeding the worst oil spill in U.S. history.

BP hopes to saw through a pipe leading out from the well and cap it with a funnel-like device using the same remotely guided undersea robots that have failed in other tries to stop the gusher. ... The effort is expected to take between four and seven days.

On ABC's This Week, Dudley said the "end point" for efforts to stop the leak is the relief well being dug near the leak. But as that well isn't expected to be finished until August. Dudley's comment "suggests there's little chance of plugging the leak until the new well is completed in August," reports The Associated Press.

This video is from Fox's Fox News Sunday, broadcast May 30, 2010.

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