ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A fuel spill from that officials worried might pollute Albuquerque drinking water seems to be bypassing the city's wells.

The Albuquerque Journal reports that leaders of the Kirtland Air Force Base jet fuel spill cleanup team say the plume appears to be headed north rather than northeast.

The direction means the fuel will likely bypass two of three nearby wells. It is unclear whether it will pollute the third.

The Air Force discovered the leak in 1999. It contaminated groundwater and is believed to have been seeping into the ground for decades.

Authorities estimate that between 6 million and 24 million gallons of fuel were leaked.

The lead scientist on the cleanup said the new monitoring data will help her map the plume and find locations to extract polluted groundwater.