Thirteen-mile oil flows off the coast of Newport Beach are expected to hit the beaches tonight, resulting in coastal closures and emergency response.
The slippery oil is believed to have come from a pipe drop and poured into the water from Newport Beach on Saturday, spreading for miles. The dump is expected to come ashore in the next few hours, city officials sent a tweet.
Workers moved to shut off the pipeline and use the equipment to force as much oil as possible after the incident was announced at 12:18 pm, said Kate Conrad of Beta Offshore, a Southern California oil producer.
“We were warned immediately,” he said.
The California Department of Hove and Wildlife has also dispatched staff to the area after numerous reports of sheen over water five miles off the coast of Newport Beach. To clean up the workers who are being recruited, the department sent a tweet.
People are being asked not to come in contact with endangered animals as they can “cause more harm than good to animals” but instead call the Oiled Wildlife Care Network at (877) 823-6926, said Eric Laughlin, spokesman for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. Employees from the network are mobilized for any necessary rescue and recovery operation.
“Members of the public should avoid the oily sea, as the area is unsafe and should only be cleared by trained contractors,” Laughlin said.
Huntington Beach closed from Santa Ana River jetty to pier, the city said in a 7:21 pm tweet.
Newport Beach resident Kerry Keating said he and other neighbors began smelling a “horrible and strong” smell like tar on Friday night and several people on Nextdoor and on the radio also spoke feeling very loud.
“We all care about marine life,” Keating wrote in an email.
The incident comes more than 30 years after a major oil spill hit the Allange County coast.
On the afternoon of February 7, 1990, an American Trader oil tanker ran over its anchor in shallow water from Huntington Beach, pouring about 417,000 gallons of unsuitable beaches and polluting popular beaches along the coast of Orange County. Oil killed fish and about 300,000. Cleaning was completed on April 3rd.