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Jul 28, 2010 8:26 AM

Step in effort to kill gusher may be accelerated

NEW ORLEANS (AP) The government's point man for the Gulf oil spill says preparations for an attempt to plug the gusher from above are going well enough that the timeline for the "static kill" may be moved up.

Work on the relief well needed for a permanent fix must be completed before the start of the static kill, which is intended to make the job of plugging the well for good easier.

Retired Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen said Thursday that crews will lay in the casing for the relief well later in the day. He says that could accelerate the work on the static kill, which he previously said would begin late Sunday or early Monday.

Allen also says there is now little chance that any of the spilled oil will reach the East Coast, and the odds will go to zero as the well is killed.

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