Response Continues to Oil Spill in Louisiana

NEW ORLEANS – The Coast Guard, the State of Louisiana, and the Cypress Pipe Line Company (CPL) have deployed personnel and equipment to respond to an oil spill from a pipeline in the Delta National Wildlife Refuge.

As of this morning, 5,000 feet of feet of containment boom have been deployed to enclose the oil. Workers plan to deploy an additional 2,000 feet of boom today around the environmentally sensitive area near Breton Island.

More than 50 people and 16 vessels are at the scene conducting and managing cleanup operations and environmental protection efforts, which include recovery of the oil and attempting to keep wildlife out of the impacted area. So far, there are no reports of any birds or other animals impacted in the incident.

CPL, which operates the pipeline, reports that approximately 18,000 gallons of crude oil has been released. An area of approximately 160 square miles has been impacted by the spill- 40 square miles of marsh and 120 square miles offshore.

The incident was first reported at approximately 1 a.m. yesterday. At that time, Berry Brothers General Contractors were conducting dredging operations for ExxonMobil in the area of the spill. They notified the Coast Guard that oil was discharging into a canal located approximately 10 miles southeast of Venice, La.

Upon receiving the initial report of the spill, CPL immediately closed off the affected section of the pipeline and initiated its emergency response procedures to minimize the environmental impact of the spill.

Cypress Pipe Line Company is a joint venture between British Petroleum and CPL. CPL is working cooperatively with Coast Guard Sector New Orleans, the Louisiana Oil Spill Coordinator’s Office – Department of Public Safety and Corrections, the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality and U.S Fish and Wildlife Service to assess and respond to the situation.

The Coast Guard is working to find the cause of the spill.

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