MS among 4 states under state of emergency - - Jackson, MS

MS among 4 states under state of emergency

MS GULF COAST -(AP)- Four states including Mississippi are each under a state of emergency.

At least 200,000 gallons of oil are now spilling into the Gulf of Mexico everyday and threatening shorelines across the Gulf Coast.

More than 1,900 people, 300 vessels and dozens of aircraft tried to contain the slick, but high winds made those efforts futile. The spill threatens hundreds of species of wildlife. The coast guard estimates at least 1.6 million gallons of oil have already spilled. Officials warn the oil could reach Alabama and Florida coasts by Monday.

In Gulfport Friday, Governor Haley Barbour declared a state of emergency.

"I want to assure people on the coast that everything is being done to keep the oil slick whether its the thin sheen or anything else from landing on the Barrier Islands or getting into the sound, that doesn't mean we'll be successful," said Governor Barbour.

In a plan filed in 2009, the rig's owner, British Petroleum, downplayed the possibility of such a catastrophic event. Congressmen said they will hold hearings to investigate how well companies have responded to the accident.

President Barack Obama has stopped any new offshore drilling projects unless rigs have new safeguards to prevent a repeat of the disaster. The explosion on the deepwater horizon killed 11 people including four Mississippians.

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