Vessels in the Gulf of Mexico are pulling in equipment and stowing gear as they get ready to move out of the way of an approaching tropical storm, retired Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen said Friday.
Safety of personnel and preservation of equipment are the priorities right now, Allen said.
"Booms and barges don't stop storm surge," Allen said. "Booms and barges become victims of storm surge and become incapacitated and can't be applied in oil spill response once the storm has passed."
Allen said he was determined not to let Tropical Storm Bonnie deal a crippling blow to the cleanup effort.
"I'm still haunted by the specter of flying in on the sixth of September  as a principal federal official, looking down at New Orleans to a parking lot full of buses that were flooded and not used for evacuation because they were not moved in time," he said.