Coast Guard responding to spill in New Bedford, Mass

BOSTON — The Coast Guard is responding to a spill of a petroleum-based product in the inner harbor in New Bedford, Mass.

There is an estimated 50 gallons of the product spread throughout the inner harbor. The source of the spill is unknown at this time.

Response petty officers from Marine Safety Office Providence, R.I., are working with the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection and Fairhaven Harbor Master to find the source of the spill to prevent further product from entering the water. The crews have not boarded any vessels, but have inspected several shipyards, piers and docks in the area.

The product covers the majority of the inner harbor, extends for about 100 yards outside of the hurricane barrier, which is keeping the product mostly contained to the harbor and is considered non-recoverable.

The product, which is lighter than water, floats on top of the water and cannot be soaked up using absorbent pads. Current weather conditions of rain, 1-foot seas and 10-knot winds are helping to break down the product.

Coast Guard Sector Southeastern New England received notification of the spill around 11:25 a.m., from a Coast Guard Auxiliary flight crew who spotted the spill from overhead.

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