Coast Guard Responding to Oil Spill in Metro Park Marina

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Coast Guard and industry partners are responding to an oil spill on the St. Johns River, Fla., in the Metro Park Marina in downtown Jacksonville.

A dredge barge owned by Misener Marine was driving pylons into the river bottom when they struck a six-inch thick power line owned by JEA that is filled with insulating oil and copper wire. Cleanup crews have contained the spill and established three forms of containment around the leak with a skimming system to remove the oil from the water as it leaks from the cable. JEA reported the spill to the Coast Guard’s National Response Center at 9:39 a.m.

The cable is three-miles long and filled with approximately 6,000 gallons of insulating oil. JEA has shutdown the pumping station that supplies insulating oil to the stretch of cable. However, the 6,000 gallons of oil that is presently in the cable will have to be bled out before repairs on the cable are made, but booming and skimming systems will prevent the oil from spreading to other parts of the river.

The Coast Guard is overseeing the clean up and environmental assessment of the spill along with Florida Department of Environmental Protection and Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. The agencies have not received any reports of impacted wildlife or significant environmental impact. There is isolated oil sheening near the point of the cable that is leaking.

Jacksonville Pollution Control, Inc. has been contracted to ensure the oil doesn’t spread and is cleaned up. The Coast Guard has approved the containment and clean-up plan from Jacksonville Pollution Control, Inc., and will monitor their progress. The clean-up efforts are expected to take approximately two days.

The Coast Guard has shut down a confined portion of the waterway traffic, but the navigational channel is still opened to regular boating traffic. Metro Park Marina was already closed for dredging, so the impact to marina users will be minimal.

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