[Updated at 6:32 p.m.] A planned attempt to burn off part of the massive spill from last week's oil rig explosion in the Gulf of Mexico has started, the U.S. Coast Guard says.
[Posted at 6 p.m.] A planned attempt to burn off part of the growing oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico was delayed by weather, but should happen "at any point" Wednesday afternoon, a BP executive said.
The site for the controlled burn had to be relocated, but "we fully expect we'll have a burn today and hopefully be able to report the result tomorrow," Doug Suttles, the oil company's chief operating officer, told reporters Wednesday afternoon.
The burn-off is part of the effort to prevent the spread of oil from an underwater well that was uncapped when the drill rig Deepwater Horizon blew up and sank last week. The slick stretched about 100 miles across the north-central Gulf on Wednesday afternoon and had advanced to within 16 miles of the mouth of the Mississippi River, the U.S. Coast Guard reported.
Eleven workers are still missing after the explosion; another 115 people were rescued.