SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


Hole found in Prudhoe Bay line, crude oil source under control


March 07, 2006

Work crews in Alaska found and isolated the hole in Prudhoe Bay's Gathering Center 2 (GC2) line and work continues to develop a permanent repair according to officials. In addition, work crews are developing a plan to clear the line of all remaining oil if it becomes necessary.

The hole is located approximately 16'8" inside the caribou crossing and sits at the bottom of the line. The hole is approximately 1/4 inch in diameter. Work crews have isolated the crude source and a temporary patch is in place. Early indications point to internal corrosion as the cause of the breach; however, an in-depth investigation is underway to determine the exact cause.

jpg oil in a tundra polygon

Oil in a tundra polygon being pumped out.
Photo Credit: Unified Command Photo - March 07, 2006

Response workers continue removal and excavation work on the 34" crude oil transit line. The source of spill was discovered early Sunday morning following snow removal around the culvert in the caribou crossing, located about one mile from GC-2. The leak was first discovered last Thursday.

As of 11:00 a.m. this morning, response crews recovered approximately 1,335 barrels of total liquids. During the first 36 hours, crews collected approximately 501 barrels of oil, after separating from water. According to officials, work progresses with caution and care to ensure worker safety and to prevent worsening the spill.

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Spill workers unplugging clogged pump.
Photo Credit: Unified Command Photo - March 07, 2006

Unified Command, comprised of representatives from BP Alaska, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the North Slope Borough and the Department of Environmental Conservation continue to focus efforts on oil recovery and clean up.

Finally, the investigation team is on site and working with regulatory agencies to collect data and help determine the cause of the release.


Source of News & Photos:

Unified Command

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Ketchikan, Alaska