Progress

BP Slows Oil Spill

Following a series of botched attempts, BP is finally reporting some success in halting the pace of leaking oil in the Gulf of Mexico. Engineers have successfully inserted a tube into the damaged pipe, siphoning away the oil and diverting it to a drill ship at the surface, almost a mile above the leak. The fix is "working as planned," a BP exec said at a briefing in Houston, "and we're very slowly increasing the rate that's coming from the riser." He could not say exactly how much oil was being contained, nor did he comment on reports that the extent of the spill has been greatly underestimated by BP. Progress is sorely needed after nearly a month of crisis and failed solutions: Just today, researchers reported discovering massive underwater plumes of oil previously unseen—some as long as 10 miles. BP says it will attempt a maneuver it calls a "top kill" in a week to 10 days, which hopefully will end the leak for good.