AMA, La. (WGNO)— Clean-up crews and environmental specialists were on scene into Friday evening more than 24 hours after 2,000 gallons of oil were spilled into the Mississippi River.
According to the Coast Guard Sector New Orleans, the spill happened at Ama Anchorage – just west of the Jefferson Parish line and about 20 miles west of New Orleans. Officials say around 6 p.m. Thursday, the tanker ship Hafnia Rhine was refueling when an estimated 2,100 gallons of oil entered the water.
Crew members with the Hafnia Rhine were able to stop the spill, however, pollution investigators with the Coast Guard believe up to 60 nearby barges were contaminated in the incident.
According to a statement from the USCG, oil spill removal organizations (or ORSOs) remained at the site into Friday evening as teams worked to contain the hazard. As part of the recovery process, crews have laid more than 6,000 feet of floating barriers to help contain the oil and are using sorbents to help remove the oil from the water. It is unknown how long it will take to absorb the oil.
As for the impact the spill will have on its surrounding environment, officials say it’s unclear. Although no harm to local wildlife has been reported during mitigation efforts, the Coast Guard reports local agencies continue to assess nearby shorelines and waterways to fully understand the repercussions of the spill.
The spill remains under investigation.