Companies' track records on safety and their drilling background should be evaluated before they are awarded offshore-exploration leases, according to the presidential oil-spill panel. Some deepwater wells, like BP's Macondo, are more prone to accidents than others, panel members added. The White House must consider "linking a specific site with the safety risks it imposes and who we are going to give the responsibility of exploring and extracting from that site," said former Sen. Bob Graham, a co-chairman of the commission.

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