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850 gallons of oil spilled on street

July 01, 2011

A clean-up crew is digging trenches on Goldenwest Street to get to the source of an oil spill after at least 850 gallons were discharged on the surface Friday morning.

City maintenance workers, and the Police and Fire departments responded after a passerby noticed oil seeping through the asphalt on the southbound side of the street, south of Ellis Avenue, said Huntington Beach Deputy Fire Marshal Jeff Lopez.

"The crew wants to see if they can open the street for a few days to get through the weekend, but we don't know yet," he said. "We want to make sure the road is safe to drive on because if it's not, traffic could be in danger. They have to do a lot of work to see if they in fact can open it or keep it closed."

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Lopez said it might take up to five days to get things back in order. The southbound lanes of Goldenwest are closed between Ellis and Garfield avenues.

Crimson Pipeline LP owns the leaking pipeline; the group bought it from Chevron about six months ago, Lopez said.

The company has assumed responsibility for the spill, but it's not clear at this time why the 12-year-old pipeline is leaking, he said. Crimson hired NRC Environmental Services for the clean-up.

Officials from the California Department of Fish and Game are on scene to monitor the clean-up. The State Fire Marshal, which is the regulating agency for hazardous liquid pipelines, is also on scene and is expected to investigate the leak, Lopez said.

Mona Shadia

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