Coast Guard, Dept. of Ecology to Conduct Investigation

Tuesday, March 21, 2006
The Coast Guard, the Washington State Department of Ecology and the City of Seattle Public Utilities continue to investigate the cause of the patches of light oil sheen that covered parts of of Elliott Bay in Seattle Friday. Federal, State and City of Seattle pollution investigators continued their search throughout the weekend and today for the cause of the oil spill. On Friday oil containment booms and sorbent materials were placed at storm drain outfalls at SW Lander St., and SW Florida St., on Harbor Island, along the West Waterway, as a precautionary measure to capture and collect any oil that may discharge from the drains. Both storm drains were monitored throughout the weekend and no oil was visible inside the booms. Additionally, the Coast Guard conducted helicopter flights during the weekend. The City of Seattle Public Utilities placed remotely operated cameras inside the Lander Street storm drain pipe today to determine if oil is present further up the drain. The Washington Department of Ecology is conducting a lab analysis of the samples taken of the spilled oil to assist in determining its origin. The Department of Ecology also is undertaking an assessment of state natural resources affected by the spill. The Coast Guard will work with the Department of Ecology, the City of Seattle and the Environmental Protection Agency to further investigate the source of the oil found in the storm water drain.

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