The well, 5,000 feet under the ocean surface off Louisiana's coast, is leaking about 1,000 barrels of oil a day. The spill, which the U.S. Coast Guard has called "very serious," could threaten the Gulf Coast's fragile ecosystem if not contained.
Four underwater vehicles have been deployed under the plan outlined by the Coast Guard and U.S. Minerals Management Service. They will dive unmanned to the ocean floor to activate a blowout preventer, a giant series of pipes and valves that could staunch the leak.
Swiss-based Transocean Ltd's Deepwater Horizon sank on Thursday, two days after it exploded and caught fire while finishing a well for BP Plc 42 miles off the Louisiana coast.
Eleven workers from the rig are missing and presumed dead in what is the worst oil rig disaster in almost a decade. The Coast Guard on Friday suspended a search for the workers.
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