Unified Command continues to manage response to Gulf oil release

NEW ORLEANS — Oil spill recovery activities continue today in the Gulf of Mexico, after spill response vessels successfully recovered a large amount of oily water overnight. While areas of sheen remain, currently there is a low risk of landfall. The present position of the remaining sheen is approximately 12 miles due south of Fourchon. Members of the Unified Command are constantly monitoring the movement of the sheen through helicopter over flights. A shoreline assessment team has been activated, and other on-shore resources are on standby.

Divers were able to make temporary repairs to the cracked pipeline on Wednesday night. Shell Pipeline Company, LP, the operator of the Eugene Island pipeline, is developing a plan for permanent repair.

The response is being managed by a Unified Command consisting of members from Shell, the U.S. Coast Guard and Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality, with support from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. “I’m pleased with the progress we are making in containing and cleaning up the spill,” said Tommy Hutto, Shell’s incident commander. “Protection of our responders, the public and environment remain our top priorities.”

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