(Trends Wide) — A spill of about 3,000 barrels of oil – or about 126,000 gallons of post-production crude – off the coast of Southern California is a “potential ecological disaster,” Huntington Beach Mayor Kim Carr said Saturday.
By this Sunday morning, “We started to find dead birds and fish on shore,” Orange County Supervisor Katrina Foley tweeted.
Significant ecological impacts in HB.
o Oil has washed up now onto the HB beachfront.
· We’ve started to find dead birds & fish washing up on the shore.
O @Calwild has a hotline for wildlife impacted from the oil. Oiled Wildlife Care Network at (877) 823-6926. pic.twitter.com/rtgExxTXZj
— Supervisor Katrina Foley (@SupervisorFoley) October 3, 2021
Foley said the leak was about 5 miles off the Huntington Beach shoreline, and oil began to hit the shores of the city of 200,000 people.
As of Sunday morning, “the leak has not completely stopped,” Huntington Beach said in a press release. He added that the preliminary patching process to repair the oil spill site was completed, and “additional repair work will be attempted in the morning.”
“Currently, the extent of the oil slick is estimated at 5.8 nautical miles, and runs from the Huntington Beach Pier to Newport Beach,” the press release detailed.
The exact cause of the spill is not yet known.
Carr said information from the US Coast Guard indicates that the spill may be the result of an oil leak from an offshore oil production operation near Huntington Beach.
The exact cause of the spill has not been determined and the owner of the pipe is unknown, city officials said. They added that the Coast Guard (USCG) is investigating.
The oil spill was first reported to the USCG shortly after 9 a.m. Saturday, the Coast Guard said in a press release.
The Coast Guard classified the situation as a major oil spill, Huntington Beach Marine Security Chief Eric McCoy said.
Huntington Beach authorities have canceled the last day of the Pacific Airshow and are inviting people to stay away from the Santa Ana River Trail, Talbert Park and Talbert Marsh areas, and from the beaches in the impacted areas to avoid contact with potentially areas. toxic oil.
Trends Wide’s Lechelle Benken contributed to this report.