Clean up on Oil Spill Continues

June 26, 2006

Reported by: Associated Press

Limited tug and barge traffic has resumed through the Calcasieu Ship Channel which had been off limits due to the spread of oil from a spill last week at the CITGO Petroleum Corporation facility at Lake Charles.

The Coast Guard says 42 tugs and barges have moved through a portion of the channel and the Intracoastal Waterway. Some 22 miles of the channel have been closed due to the spill along with Prien Lake.

An estimated 15-thousand to 18-thousand barrels of oil leaked into the channel last Tuesday, and another 30-thousand penetrated the Indian Marais, Citgo's onsite drainage feature. The Coast Guard says about 31-thousand barrels of oil have been removed from theriver, along with another 18-thousand-836 from the Indian Marais.

About 950 people are working around the clock to remove the oil, using 49 skimmers and 47 vacuum trucks. The exact cause of the spill is under investigation.