Hayward Testimony Angers Gulf Residents

Twelve hundred miles from Capitol Hill, residents of the Gulf Coast were glued to their TV sets as BP CEO Tony Hayward testified before a congressional committee.

Special Section: Disaster in the Gulf

Residents and business owners here were hoping to hear some real answers Thursday, CBS News Correspondent Don Teague reports. But, like members of Congress, most coastal residents were angry and frustrated.

For the owner of Grand Isle's Bridge Side Marina, Hayward's testimony was a waste of time.

"He's not answering nobody's question," said Dodie Vegas. "He's just going around and around with every question that he can. I don't think any of them has gotten a straight answer yet."

Across the island, seafood wholesaler Dean Blanchard was even more blunt.

"I know he's gonna lie because he has to open his mouth to talk, and everything that's been coming out of his mouth so far has been a lie," Blanchard said.

There is so much anger here, not just at BP, but at the federal government, especially after the Coast Guard shut down several vacuum boats Wednesday capable of removing 1,000 gallons of oil per day.

The problem with the boats was inspection certificates, but on Thursday that order was rescinded after a protest by the governor.

"We certainly cannot afford 24 hours' delay in deploying this equipment to fight this oil and keep it out of our wetlands," Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal told reporters.

Local officials moved barges into place Thursday to block oil from Barataria Bay, the source for nearly 30 percent of Louisiana's seafood revenue.

Still, the oil keeps coming. It's so thick in this area, fishermen here have dubbed it "The Black Sea."

The Coast Guard says the relief well, the ultimate solution for stopping the gusher, is actually going ahead of schedule but still won't be complete until the second week of August.
  • Don Teague

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