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Aug 2, 2010 4:34 AM

Gulf crews prepare to start plugging well for good

NEW ORLEANS (AP) BP says it will start shoving mud and maybe cement into the blown-out oil well in the Gulf of Mexico on Tuesday in what could be one of the final steps to plug it for good.

BP PLC Senior Vice President Kent Wells said Monday that crews will likely start the so-called "static kill" attempt Tuesday if tests Monday determine the well can withstand the mud.

There's no guarantee of success, and engineers still plan to follow it up days later with a similar procedure through relief wells they've been digging for months.

But the oil giant's engineers and petroleum experts say it's the clearest path yet to choke the blown-out well and make it even easier for the crews digging the relief well to ensure oil can never again erupt from the mile-deep well.

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