WikiLeaks cables reveal BP Azerbaijan gas leak

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Associated Press

Posted on December 16, 2010 at 7:02 AM

LONDON (AP) — Leaked U.S. embassy cables have revealed that oil company BP PLC was "fortunate" to have evacuated workers from a platform in Azerbaijan after a gas leak similar to the Gulf of Mexico disaster.

In a cable published by The Guardian newspaper on Thursday, BP Azerbaijan President Bill Schrader is reported as saying the "red button" was pressed after detection of a gas leak on the Central Azeri platform in September 2008.

The subsequent evacuation of 211 workers was BP's largest emergency evacuation at the time.

The cable says that given the explosive potential the company was quite fortunate to have been able to evacuate everyone safely and prevent any gas ignition.

The cable was released by the WikiLeaks site.

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