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Lawsuit seeks to halt drilling at an even deeper BP site

A former safety consultant for BP asked a federal judge Monday to order the oil giant to cease drilling at its Atlantis platform in the Gulf, citing federal regulators' failure to investigate potential dangers at the site — described by BP as the deepest off-shore well in the world.

On any other day, the lawsuit by Kenneth Abbott, a former safety contract engineer for BP, and Food & Water Watch, a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit group, might go unnoticed.

But on the heels of the fatal Deepwater Horizon explosion last month — and all the questions surrounding it — the allegations raise more doubts about how well federal regulators, specifically the Minerals Management Service, have inspected and keep track of the potentially lethal consequences of drilling in the Gulf.

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