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May 11, 2010 10:44 AM by Sharlee Jacobs

UPDATE: Senate Hearings Prompting Spill Blame Game

WASHINGTON (AP) - The chairman of a key Senate committee says
failures that led to the massive Gulf oil spill need to be closely
examined so new safety measures can be imposed.
New Mexico Democrat Jeff Bingaman opened the first congressional
hearings Tuesday into the accident. Scheduled to testify are
executives of companies involved, including BP, which operated the
drilling rig.
Bingaman said it's not enough "to label this catastrophic
failure an unpredictable and unforeseeable occurrence."
Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, the panel's ranking Republican,
said it is essential to determine if the rig operators followed
regulations and the law. But she said the accident should not
interfere in continued offshore oil development.

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