A top US official has warned BP may be "pushed out of the way" if it fails to perform in the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster clean-up.This is not a joke. Salazar is just now realizing this. Obama's Katrina? 'Fraid so.
Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said the British oil giant had missed "deadline after deadline" in its efforts to seal its blown-out oil well.
But he said BP had agreed to pay clean-up costs beyond the current US $75m (£52m) liability limit.
Mr Salazar is due to visit the disaster site on Monday with other officials.
The oil leak began more than a month ago, when a drilling rig working for BP exploded, killing 11 people.
Millions of gallons of oil have spewed into the ocean since then from the well's ruptured riser pipe, 1,524m (5,000ft) beneath the surface
The spill has reached Louisiana and is threatening Florida and Cuba.
"If we find they're not doing what they're supposed to be doing, we'll push them out of the way appropriately," Mr Salazar told reporters after visiting BP's US headquarters in the Texan city.
The BBC's Madeleine Morris reports from Washington that Mr Salazar presumably means the US could take over the entire operation.
The US government has been at pains up until now to stress that BP is not only legally responsible for cleaning up the spill but paying for all clean-up and restoration, our correspondent says.
It is within the US government's power to push BP aside but the question is what would that achieve when BP is the only organisation with the knowledge to deal with a situation like this at such a depth, she adds.
BP Might Need To Step Aside. Really?
BBC News reports that BP is not doing enough to stop its leak that will ruin America for years to come. Ken Salazar is even considering taking over from BP! Seriously? But BP was doing so well.....