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Main articles: "Deepwater Horizon explosion and "Deepwater Horizon oil spill
An explosion on the drilling rig Deepwater Horizon occurred on April 20, 2010, killing 11 workers. The Deepwater Horizon sank on April 22, 2010, in water approximately 5,000 feet (1,500 m) deep, and was located resting on the "seafloor approximately 1,300 feet (400 m) (about a quarter of a mile) northwest of the well.
Following the rig explosion and subsea blowout, BP started a relief well using "Transocean's "Development Driller III on May 2, 2010. The relief well would potentially take up to three months to drill. BP started a second relief well using Transocean's "GSF Development Driller II on May 16, 2010.
The well was successfully sealed off from flow into the sea on August 4, 2010 by a "static kill" (injection of heavy fluids and cement into the "wellhead at the mudline). To further ensure the plugging of the original well, the first relief well established communication with the original wellbore near total depth and injected heavy fluids and cement. These efforts should have completely sealed off the Macondo Prospect well at that point.
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