Disasters

Is Halliburton to Blame for Rig Explosion?

Get your lawsuits ready: The Wall Street Journal reports that Halliburton may be responsible for the oil-rig explosion that killed 11 workers and unleashed the oil spill that’s currently devastating the Gulf Coast. Halliburton was in charge on the rig of a process called “cementing,” by which cement is pumped into the gap between the outside of the drill and the inside of the well. The purpose of this process is to prevent oil and gas leaks, but if cracks develop in the cement, the oil and gas can escape and ultimately ignite. Halliburton had finished cementing the well shortly before the explosion. The Houston-based firm is the largest company in the global cementing business, which accounted for $1.7 billion, or 11 percent, of the company’s 2009 revenue.