Coast Guard significantly downgrades amount of oil spilled off O.C. coast

Local news

Officials say the amount of oil that leaked from a pipeline off the Orange County coast, fouling stretches of sand and threatening ecologically sensitive areas from Huntington Beach to San Diego County, may be smaller than originally projected.

In the first days of the spill, officials warned that possibly 126,000 gallons had flowed out of a pipeline that runs from the Port of Long Beach to an offshore production and processing platform. That number was raised on Monday to potentially 144,000 gallons.

However, Capt. Rebecca Ore, commander of the U.S. Coast Guard’s Los Angeles-Long Beach sector, said Thursday that after further assessments officials had determined that a minimum of about 24,696 gallons, or 588 barrels, and a maximum of 131,000 gallons, or 3,134 barrels, of oil was released from the pipeline.

The 131,000-gallon estimate is a “maximum worst-case discharge that is a planning scenario based on a volume in a pipeline,” Ore said.

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