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Originally published Friday, October 1, 2010 at 10:58 AM

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Large chunk of Gulf of Mexico reopened to fishing

Another chunk of the Gulf of Mexico has been opened to fishing after seafood tests and surveys found no oil contamination threat.

The Associated Press

NEW ORLEANS —

Another chunk of the Gulf of Mexico has been opened to fishing after seafood tests and surveys found no oil contamination threat.

The 5,628-square-mile area is just west of the Mississippi River delta and about 75 miles south of the BP well that spewed millions of gallons of oil into the Gulf.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said no oil or sheen has been seen in the area since Aug. 6.

Federal officials said about 26,287 square miles of federal waters remain closed. That is about 11 percent of the Gulf. At the height of the spill, about 37 percent of federal waters in the Gulf were closed, or 88,522 square miles.

NOAA administrator Jane Lubchenco said the seafood in the newly reopened area is safe to eat.

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