Update on Arthur Kill Oil Spill Response
PERTH AMBOY, N.J., Feb. 19, 2006 -- A Unified Incident Command (UIC) comprised of the U.S. Coast Guard (with coordination from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency), the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYC DEP), the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYS DEC) and Chevron Products Co. continue to respond to a crude oil spill in the Arthur Kill.
Updated information includes:
Spill Volume and Recovery
The total volume of crude oil spilled is unchanged from the prior estimate of approximately 31,000 gallons.
Approximately 96,000 gallons of oil-water mixture have been recovered and are currently being stored.
Approximately 145,620 pounds of oil absorbents and other contaminated solids have been removed during the clean-up.
Unified Incident Command's priorities are:
Protect human health and the environment, and continue a safe, incident-free response.
Increase assessments by air and land and develop response strategies. Over-flights of the spill area have been conducted throughout the cleanup and will continue, weather permitting.
Contain and clean up impacted areas. The focus areas include the Chevron spill site, Mill Creek, the Tottenville and Port Atlantic Marinas and the shoreline north of Outer Bridge Crossing. Heavy machinery is excavating the contaminated soil at the source of the spill.
Assess and monitor oil impact on the environment to ensure successful rehabilitation for all affected wildlife and vegetation.
Personnel and Equipment Deployed
Approximately 440 personnel from the Unified Incident Command, including contractors, are on site working to manage response efforts and contain and clean up the spill.
More than 14,000 feet of containment boom has been deployed.
On-water oil recovery is being conducted by seven oil skimming vessels. Another 40 vessels/work boats are being used for a variety of purposes, such as deploying or maintaining containment and absorbent booms.
Responders have also deployed five vacuum trucks and other equipment for the response effort.
To date, Tri-State Bird Rescue and Research, Inc., continues to patrol the spill area and has recovered one oiled Canadian goose and two deceased Herring Gulls.
A deceased porpoise was recovered and transferred to Riverhead Foundation on Feb. 16. The final report on the cause of death is expected on Feb. 20.
Individuals who observe injured or oiled wildlife should not attempt to rescue them. Doing so can be dangerous, and may cause injury to both the would-be rescuer and the wildlife. Observers should note the type of wildlife, location, and time of their observation and promptly report it by calling the following number: 732-738-2155. Trained wildlife experts will then be dispatched to recover and care for the injured wildlife.
Only one minor first-aid injury (cut finger) has occurred during the cleanup, as well as one non spill related first-aid.
The cause of the spill remains under investigation. Chevron is cooperating with regulatory agencies to determine the cause.
Published: February 2006