Rain, choppy seas halt cleanup near sunken oil rig

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Choppy seas, strong winds and rain have halted the cleanup of an oil spill at the site of a massive drilling rig that exploded and sank in the Gulf of Mexico.

Coast Guard Petty Officer Erik Swanson says efforts to contain the spill would resume once the weather cleared. The Deepwater Horizon rig exploded Tuesday about 50 miles off the Louisiana coast. About 115 workers managed to reach safety, but the Coast Guard has since called off the search for 11 workers still missing and presumed dead.

The cause of the blast remains unknown. An undetermined amount of oil has spilled from the Deepwater Horizon. The sheen appeared to cover an area about two miles wide and eight miles long Friday afternoon.

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