You can hit the ‘Bama beaches this weekend

Published 12:38 pm Friday, May 7, 2010

The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico isn’t expected to reach Alabama beaches by Mother’s Day, according to federal forecasters.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has released a forecast through the weekend forecasting more northerly winds at 5-10 knots, or 1-7 mph on the weekend, meaning the leading edge of the oil spill will stay away from Alabama beaches on the weekend.

More than 200,000 gallons of oil a day continues to pour from a well in the Gulf off the coast of Louisiana after the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded April 10, killing 11 workers.

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Officials said at about midday a containment box that would prevent much of the oil from leaking into the Gulf is just above the well and robot submarines are aligning the device. There is no time estimate for when the box will be on the seafloor.

That’s only a portion of the solution. Officials say once the box is in place, crews will connect a pipe to the box to siphon oil to a boat.