WHERE: Deepwater Horizon rig, 50 miles off Louisiana coast
WHAT: Five times more oil is leaking into the Gulf of Mexico than originally estimated after an April 20 explosion left 11 workers presumed dead. The latest estimate is about 5,000 spilled barrels a day and a cleanup cost approaching $8 billion.
WHO TO BLAME: The Deepwater Horizon reportedly was not equipped with a shutoff switch that might have closed the 5,000-foot-deep well. Such switches are not required in the United States, but are used in other countries such as Norway and Brazil.
DAMAGE POTENTIAL: Oil likely will reach the coastline this weekend, threatening some 400 species of animals, including sea turtles and dolphins. The Gulf’s abundant oyster and shrimp populations also could be affected.