A May 11, 2010 image released by British Petroleum (BP) shows the main oil leak caused by the April 20 explosion of the Deepwater Horizon rig which killed 11 workers. UPI/BP
WASHINGTON, May 20 (UPI) -- The oil gushing from the damaged BP oil well at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico was shown live on the Internet Thursday with the help of U.S. lawmakers.
However, there appeared to be difficulties getting through to the House of Representatives link (www.globalwarming.house.gov/spillcam ) and the one on the official Web site of Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., (www.billnelson.senate.gov).
Nelson's site did carry a YouTube video of the oil leak and he also had a counter tallying the estimated number of gallons of crude oil -- more than 6 million -- that have leaked since the April 20 explosion that sank the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig and killed 11 workers.
Nelson said streaming the live leak video would help the broader scientific and academic communities contribute to understanding what went wrong and why, MSNBC reported.
"Plus, we need to make sure everybody sees what's going on down there," Nelson said in a statement.
Rep. Ed Markey, D-Mass., said in a statement the video "will allow the world to see the damage that is occurring in our oceans, and reinforce the urgency to end this disaster."
"This may be BP's footage, but it's America's ocean. ... This footage will aid analysis by independent scientists blocked by BP from coming to see the spill," said Markey, chairman of the House Energy and Environment Subcommittee within the Energy and Commerce Committee, which is leading a House investigation into the spill.