May 25th, 2010
09:52 PM ET

Will the 'Top Kill' Work? Join the Live Chat

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BP engineers are preparing to start their next attempt to stop the oil spill in the Gulf.  Anderson is along the Gulf coast tonight in Louisiana with all the developments. We'll also have the tonight's other headlines.

Want to know what else we're covering? Read EVENING BUZZ

Scroll down to join the live chat during the program. It's your chance to share your thoughts on tonight's headlines. Keep in mind, you have a better chance of having your comment get past our moderators if you follow our rules.

Here are some of them:

1) Keep it short (we don't have time to read a "book")
2) Don't write in ALL CAPS (there's no need to yell)
3) Use your real name (first name only is fine)
4) No links
5) Watch your language (keep it G-rated; PG at worst - and that includes $#&*)

Filed under: Live Blog
May 25th, 2010
09:47 PM ET

Evening Buzz: Live from the Gulf

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Maureen Miller
AC360° Writer

Tonight on 360° Anderson will be reporting from Louisiana's Gulf coast just hours before BP makes yet another attempt to stop the oil leak. BP says the earliest the "top kill" maneuver will begin is at dawn Wednesday.

Preliminary testing is already underway. A BP official warns if they uncover any problems they may not go through with the effort to plug the leak.

"We've got a crack team of investigators that are going to pour over the diagnostics data. And based on that they'll design the 'top kill' procedure. There is a remote possibility that we could get some information that it wouldn't work. We don't believe that would be the case, but it is a remote possibility," Kent Wells, BP Senior Vice President told reporters today on a conference call.

BP also came under fire today from Democratic Rep. Edward J. Markey of Massachusetts who said the company was going to stop its live video feed of the spill during the 'top kill' attempt. BP later said it will continue the video feed after facing pressure from President Obama.

We'll have all this angles tonight and you'll hear from residents of Grand Isle, Lousiana where the shrimp industry is a way of life. But that industry is now dead.

"BP We Want Our Beach Back" is on one of many signs posted in the town.

We're also digging deeper on the impact the spill is having on wildlife. Pelicans and other birds are coated in oil. So are turtles, crabs and other animals. That's just what we can see on the surface. It's unclear at this point what the millions of gallons of oil underwater are doing to the entire ecosystem. We'll talk it over with Jack Hanna, famed director emeritus of the Columbus Zoo and Host of "Jack Hanna's Into the Wild."

Join us for these stories and much more starting at 10 p.m. ET on CNN. See you then.

Filed under: Maureen Miller • The Buzz
May 25th, 2010
08:17 PM ET

1964 cold case reopened


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Gabriel Falcon
AC360° Writer

A 45-year-old cold case disappearance of a teenage boy was reopened this week by the Salt Lake City Police Department.

“We’re just hoping somebody recalls something,” said Detective Cody Lougy, “or maybe somebody’s heart softened and they’ll call us and give us an honest tip.”

Reed Taylor Jeppson was 15 when he vanished on October 11, 1964. His older sister, Suzanne Jeppson Tate, said the family had just returned home from Sunday church services.

“He came upstairs and changed his clothes,” Tate, now 65, told CNN, “and started opening up some cans of dog food. I said ‘what are you going to do?’ and he said he was going to feed the dogs.”

Reed kept two German shorthair pointers in a kennel in the backyard, Tate added. “He said ‘I’ll be back’ and none of us ever saw him again,” she said. “The pain and anguish never go away.”

The teenager, who Tate described as exceptionally strong and happy, was last seen wearing a pair of blue Levi jeans, a white cotton shirt, gym shoes and a reversible parka. According to Det. Lougy, there were “some possible sightings of him but nothing came to bear.”

Advances in forensic science coupled with the creation of national databases for missing persons and unidentified remains prompted the decision to reopen the investigation.

“There’s a lot of things we can certainly do on this case now that we could not do back in 1964,” Lougy told CNN, “so we grabbed it and ran with it.”

Police are also counting on people to come forward with information. We’d like people to think back to the days and months surrounding Reed’s disappearance and remember anything that might be useful to our fresh investigation,” Lougy said.

Tate, who said her brother would be 61 on May 28, believes someone is hiding a dark secret.

“Whoever hurt my brother, and I know he was abducted, had to have been somebody 18 or older,” she said. “That person is probably around my age today and we’re not looking at a whole lot of years left.”

“We want this person to give us some resolve and closure if they are still alive. We want them to have their heart softened and their heart touched and to let us know where his remains are.”

Anyone with information on the disappearance of Reed Taylor Jeppson is asked to call the Salt Lake City police at 801-799-3000.

Filed under: 360° Radar • Crime & Punishment • Gabe Falcon
May 25th, 2010
07:34 PM ET

Tonight: Text 360

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Tomorrow, BP plans to pump thick, viscous fluid twice the density of water into the site of the leak to stop the flow so the well can then be sealed with cement - the "top kill" procedure.

CNN's Ed Lavandera and David Mattingly have been reporting on the ground for the last month, following every turn of the Gulf oil spill. Do you have questions for them? Let us know!

Send us a text message with your question. Text AC360 (or 22360), and you might hear it on air!

Filed under: 360° Radar • Gulf Oil Spill • T1 • Text 360
May 25th, 2010
06:32 PM ET

BP says it won't cut off video feed

Ed Lavandera | BIO
CNN Correspondent

The turning point in the oil spill story came two weeks ago when BP finally let the world see video images from the underwater cameras.

I heard early on in this disaster that BP had cameras mounted on underwater robotic vehicles and those images could be seen live in the command centers. We tried and tried to get images released with no luck. I decided this was a story and issue worth raising. We put together a story and we called it "Where's the video?"

The next day BP released a 30-second video clip and instantly the tone and seriousness of the situation seemed to change dramatically. Congress called on BP to release more and to provide a live stream from the underwater cameras. It's been eye-opening in so many ways.

To hear the news today, that BP almost considered cutting off the live video stream during Wednesday's "top kill" effort seemed like a major step back in time. This evening, an administration official told CNN, "BP agreed to make the live feed of the top kill attempt available at the request of the President and the National Incident Center." Good to see we haven't lost the only access to what's going on a mile underwater.

Filed under: 360° Radar • Ed Lavandera • Gulf Oil Spill
May 25th, 2010
05:46 PM ET

Beat 360° 5/25/10

Ready for today's Beat 360°? Everyday we post a picture you provide the caption and our staff will join in too. Tune in tonight at 10pm to see if you are our favorite! Here is the 'Beat 360°' pic:

President Barack Obama greets Susie Lambert, the daughter of retiring Col. Kit Lambert (L), before boarding Air Force One on May 25, 2010 at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland.

Have fun with it. We're looking forward to your captions! Make sure to include your name, city, state (or country) so we can post your comment.

________________________________________________________________________________ Beat 360° Challenge

Filed under: 360° Radar • Beat 360° • T1
May 25th, 2010
04:58 PM ET
May 25th, 2010
04:54 PM ET

The oil is on the beach!

Ismael Estrada
AC360­° Producer

Port Fourchon, Louisiana - We are walking along the sandy beaches here in Port Fourchon, Louisiana, but we are not alone. Hazardous material and clean up crews here are working to clear fresh oil as it laps up along rocks - just steps from an area that is used for recreation.

Locals tell us they just cleaned up much of the oil that washed up yesterday. Today, it looks as if they have to start again.

Just about 30 minutes away in Grand Isle, local fishermen are frustrated. This is when they make their money, but no one can take their shrimp boats out anytime soon.

People have no idea what they'll do next. They all agree, the businesses they run now may be closing. The fishing around here, they say, won't be coming back any time soon.

Filed under: 360° Radar • Gulf Oil Spill • Ismael Estrada
May 25th, 2010
04:49 PM ET

Experts: Oil spill could be disaster for animals

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Ashley Hayes

A huge oil spill oozing toward the Gulf Coast on Thursday threatens hundreds of species of wildlife, some in their prime breeding season, environmental organizations said.

The Coast Guard said Wednesday that the amount of oil spilling from an underwater well after an oil rig explosion last week has increased to as many as 5,000 barrels of oil a day, or 210,000 gallons, five times more than what was originally believed.

Although efforts to minimize the damage are under way and options under consideration include asking the U.S. military for assistance, wildlife conservation groups say the oil could pose a "growing environmental disaster."

"The terrible loss of 11 workers (unaccounted for after the rig explosion) may be just the beginning of this tragedy as the oil slick spreads toward sensitive coastal areas vital to birds and marine life and to all the communities that depend on them," said Melanie Driscoll, director of bird conservation for the Louisiana Coastal Initiative, in a statement.

Coastal areas of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida could be at risk, the organization said.

Read More

May 25th, 2010
04:49 PM ET

Online maps, apps help track oil spill

Doug Gross

With maps, apps and databases, the online community is working to help show the world the scope, and damage, of the Gulf Coast oil spill.

An April 20 explosion at an offshore oil rig owned by BP began dumping oil into the Gulf, with some rising to the surface and reaching the fragile wetlands along the coast of Louisiana.

Millions of gallons have spilled, and some estimates say it's already bigger than the notorious Exxon Valdez spill off the Alaskan coast in 1989.

Paul Rademacher, engineering director for Google Maps, said that in the wake of the disaster, he felt descriptions of the amount of oil gushing into the Gulf were hard to understand.

"The usual numbers are barrels-a-day ... there were some statements about how many Olympic-size swimming pools it would fill up, the equivalent of when we talk about football fields for length," said Rademacher, who has been at Google since 2005.

Read More

Filed under: 360° Radar • Gulf Oil Spill
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