Small part of oil slick reaches powerful current

Published 9:25 pm Wednesday, May 19, 2010

ROBERT, La. (AP) — Federal scientists say a small portion of the oil slick from the blown-out well in the Gulf of Mexico has reached a powerful current that could take it to Florida.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration scientists said Wednesday they have detected light to very light sheens in the loop current, which circulates into the Gulf and takes water south to the Florida Keys and the Gulf Stream.

The agency says that any oil would be “highly weathered” and could evaporate before reaching Florida. And it says the oil could never reach Florida at all.

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But scientists say diluted oil could appear in isolated locations in Florida if persistent winds push the current toward it.