A 13-square-mile oil spill off the coast of Newport Beach is expected to hit the coast tonight, leading to coastal closures and emergency response.
The oil pipeline is believed to have originated from a leak and spilled into the water on Newport Beach on Saturday, spreading over miles. The spill is likely to reach the coast in the next few hours, city officials tweeted.
After learning of the incident at 12:18 p.m., workers shut down the pipeline and used pressurized equipment to get as much oil as possible, said Kate Conrad of Beta Offshore, a Southern California oil producer involved in the operation.
“We were immediately alerted,” she said.
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife dispatched personnel to the scene after several reports of water splashing about five miles off the coast of Newport Beach. Sweepers are being mobilized, the department tweeted.
Eric Laughlin, a spokesman for the California Department, said people are being told not to approach potentially affected wildlife because “they can do more harm than good to animals” but instead call the Wildlife Care Network at (877) 823-6926. Fish and wildlife. A crew from the network has been formed for any necessary rescue and rehabilitation work.
“The public should avoid oily shores because the area is unsafe and should only be cleaned by trained contractors,” Laughlin said.
The 7:21 tweet said Huntington Beach was closed from the Santa Ana River jetty to the ghat.
Kerry Keating, a resident of Newport Beach, said she and other neighbors began to smell “horrible and intense” like tar on Friday night, and several people on the Nextdor neighborhood network reported hearing loud noises.
“We are all very concerned about marine life,” Keating wrote in an email.
The incident comes more than 30 years after a massive oil spill on the Orange County coast.
On the afternoon of Feb. 1, 1990, an American merchant oil tanker ran aground at anchor in relatively shallow water near Huntington Beach, spilling nearly 41,000,000 gallons of crude and damaging popular beaches on Orange County shores. The oil killed fish and about 3,400 birds. The cleanup was completed on April 3rd.