Reporting from Washington —
Retired Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen, commander of the federal response to the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, called Monday for creation of a independent third party to oversee containment and cleanup of future spills instead of leaving the job to the government.
Allen told members of President Obama’s commission investigating the spill that the public mistrusted the way BP and the government handled the disaster and that an independent expert would reduce concerns about conflicts of interest.
He said his recommendation does not reflect a lack of confidence in the ability of the Coast Guard or other federal agencies to respond to such incidents.
In testimony to the National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill, Allen said he did not think BP had shirked its responsibilities. Yet despite the large scale of the cleanup effort and BP’s pledges to make amends, the public largely believed the response system was broken.
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