BP said on Thursday no oil was leaking into the Gulf of Mexico for the first time since its huge spill began in April as it conducted pressure tests on its blown-out deep-sea well.
For the test, BP closed valves and vents on a tight-sealing containment cap installed atop its ruptured well earlier this week. Initial results early in the test showed the cap had completely contained the flow of oil, BP said.
“It’s a great sight but it’s far from the finish line,” Doug Suttles, a senior BP executive, told reporters.
BP’s U.S. shares initially jumped 10 percent after the company announced that its test had shut off the flow of oil.
President Barack Obama called the end of the flow of oil into the ocean a “positive sign,” but cautioned that the latest effort was still in the testing phase. The spill has caused an economic and environmental disaster along the U.S. Gulf Coast.
After a delay to fix a leak, BP began the test on Thursday afternoon on the cap that could stop all or most of the flow of crude that has been polluting the ocean and coastline since April 20 in the worst offshore oil spill in U.S. history.