This past Sunday, an unknown amount of crude oil was spilled in the Mississippi River following the crash of two oil barges that were being pushed by a tugboat.
Information made available to the general public by the US Coast Guard says that these two oil barges somehow slammed into a railroad bridge and suffered considerable damage. Fortunately, nobody was injured.
US Coast Guard employees, together with state and local authorities, were quick in arriving at the scene and did they best to contain the spill. Despite the fact that two barges were involved in this crash, it looks like only one of them was leaking oil.
For the time being, nobody can say for sure exactly how much oil made its way into the Mississippi River, yet the US Coast Guard and the authorities present at the scene admitted that the leaking barge was holding a considerable amount of crude oil.
“The barge that is leaking was holding 80,000 gallons (roughly 2,000 barrels) of light crude oil,” Lieutenant Ryan told members of the press.
In order to deal with this situation properly, the US Coast Guard decided to close a section of the lower Mississippi. Thus, no traffic was allowed from mile marker 425 to mile marker 441 near Vicksburg.
However, the US Coast Guard wished to make it quite clear that thing were well under control and that people didn’t have to worry about how the accidental oil spill would affect the Mississippi River.
Thus, according to gCaptain, one of the statements issued by the officials in charge of making head and tail of this situation, read as follows:
“The source has been contained and tank levels are being monitored for further leakage. Coast Guard Marine Safety Vicksburg has dispatched a pollution response team to assess the size of the spill and oversee cleanup operations.”