The oil spill from the sunk BP rig off the Louisiana coast is expanding much quicker than first estimated.
It has tripled in size in just days, so much so, some experts are now warning of a nightmare scenario if Gulf streams carry it towards the Atlantic.
President Obama flies to the region today to assess the threat for himself amid growing criticism of the BP led operation.
Bad weather is hampering the clean up. Many fishermen eager to help, are stuck in harbour because of choppy seas.
Shrimp fisherman Mike Bertholo said: ‘‘There’s nothing for us to do. Mother Nature is going to take its course no matter what and I don’t think the way it is spilling into the gulf, I don’t see no chance of them cleaning up the mess and it could put us out of work for two to three years who knows maybe longer. Cause they ain’t telling us what is going on out there just telling you what you want to hear.”
Much of that frustration stems from a feeling the British oil giant is being vague about its plans to contain the disaster. The firm insists its launched the biggest mop-up ever.
But, the danger to some of America’s most precious eco-systems, is huge, with some fearing the environmental damage could last a generation.