... A variant of Rule #3 in The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates would apply: 3. A safety inspector at a dead run outranks everybody.
Rumor, with some reinforcing testimony, is that the company (Schlumberger) hired to do a final inspection of the cement plug ordered BP's on-site ranking manager to kill the well because it was kicking (a behavior that you might see early on but that should DEFINITELY not be seen that far along in the process); the manager REFUSED, and the Schlumberger rep immediately asked for a helicopter out; BP refused, Schlumberger rep immediately phoned his HQ and got THEM TO FLY A HELICOPTER OUT IMMEDIATELY and took his crew off. Hours later the rig went up.
If this is substantiated, it's a Hollywood-Evil Corporation level of stupidity and greed -- the kind you see onscreen and say to yourself, "but no one in real life would be that stupid, to deliberately ignore the ultra-expensive and competent safety consultant YOU HIRED to make sure things were safe!" Heads will be rolling from the level of the BP manager ON UP.
Ganked from autopope