Blowout could shift regulator focus to shallow-water drilling

|By:, SA News Editor

Last week's blowout on a Hercules natural gas rig off the Louisiana coast could shift regulators' focus to shallow-water drilling and make an overhaul of safety equipment regulations more likely.

Since the BP disaster, most attention has been on drilling in Gulf water thousands of feet deep, where energy companies are chasing large new fields and the risks seemed greatest.

Top makers of blowout preventers are National Oilwell Varco (NOV), Cameron (CAM) and GE unit Hydril Pressure Control.