A containment dome has been lowered to the site of a massive oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico, a BP spokesman said Friday.
The hope is that the container will collect the leaking oil, which would be sucked up to a drill ship on the surface. If the operation is successful, BP plans to deploy a second, smaller dome to deal with a second leak in the ruptured pipe.
An oil slick has been spreading across the northern Gulf of Mexico since late April, when the drilling rig Deepwater Horizon blew up and sank about 40 miles off the mouth of the Mississippi River.
BP owns the damaged well at the heart of the slick. Efforts to shut down the well have failed, leaving it spewing about 210,000 gallons (5,000 barrels) of oil per day into the Gulf of Mexico.