New Orleans, La. – Retired Coast Guard Admiral Thad Allen says plans call for strengthening the relief well, then pumping mud down through the containment cap in a procedure called a static kill. The relief well is designed to then seal it off permanently from the bottom. Allen says preparations will continue through mid-week, with timelines set for the next steps.
"Wednesday through Saturday and Sunday, running the casing pipe to be in a position on Monday the 2nd of August to begin the static kill. And then approximately five days later to begin the bottom kill"
Allen says long-term monitoring will be needed to keep track of the tar balls that appear as the oil dissipates in the warm water of the Gulf.
For NPR News, I'm Eileen Fleming in New Orleans.