By Frank James

BP's engineers have successfully inserted a mile-long tube into the pipe that has been gushing thousands of barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico since the Deepwater Horizon accident happened in April, according to NPR's Elizabeth Shogren.

Elizabeth reported on Weekend Edition Sunday that the energy giant's engineers hadn't yet started capturing oil but that they hoped once that operation started, they'd be able to divert 80 percent or more of the oil to awaiting tanker ships on the surface.

It's still not certain if this tube method will work since it's never been tried before nearly a mile underwater where the water pressures are crushing and the temperature just above freezing.

But since the tried and true method of stopping such blowouts -- drilling relief wells-- is still months away from completion and with so much oil escaping into the gulf daily, a lot of hope is riding on that tube.

categories: Accidents and Disasters

9:40 - May 16, 2010