Friday, March 27, 2015

Minor Fuel Oil Spill Occurs at POLB

By Mark Edward Nero

A spill of heavy fuel oil at an anchorage inside the Port of Long Beach resulted in a response by the US Coast Guard, State of California and response crews, the USCG confirmed on March 23.

About 33 gallons of heavy fuel oil was spilled during bunkering operations around 7 am on the morning of Sat., March 21. A boom was set-up to contain the spill and commercial cleaning crews were dispatched to the scene.

California’s Department of Fish and Wildlife, Office of Spill Prevention and Response personnel also were on-scene monitoring the operations during the incident, as well as Coast Guard pollution responders.

Coast Guard spokesman PA1 Adam Eggers declined to name the company or ship involved in the incident, or the name of the terminal where the spillage took place.

The spill was a relatively small one compared to others that have occurred at Long Beach over the years. In February 2011, a 710-gallon spill was caused by the Libyan-flagged ship Aljalaa during an internal transfer of diesel at the Tesoro terminal at Berth 84A.

And in November 2010, a bulk carrier was refueling at anchorage when one of its tanks overflowed and dozens of gallons of fuel oil landed in the water.

Also, in October 2013, ExxonMobil temporarily suspended operations at an oil pipeline system at the Port of Long Beach due to an oil leak in the area. The company did not identify the source of the leak at the time or say how much oil had been released, but it noted that the oil had been contained.