|July 10, 2010|
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MDEQ JULY 10 UPDATE ON OIL MATERIAL IN MISSISSIPPI
BILOXI, Miss. – Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) staff through aerial surveillance with the Mississippi National Guard, MDEQ response staff, and Shoreline Cleanup Assessment Teams (SCAT) have observed the following Saturday (as of 7:00 p.m.) and sent to Unified Command for review and appropriate response:
Morning flight information:
Emulsified oil with seaweed. (N 30 13.85, W 88 54.86)
Seaweed mixed with sheen. (N 30 13.93, W 88 53.94)
Line of metallic sheen with possible tar balls. (N 30 15.86, W 89 22.49)
Area of sea grass mixed with tar balls and sheen. (N 30 17.29, W 88 26.57)
High sheen with mousse and sea grass. (N 30 16.86, W 88 47.95)
Line of brown seaweed mixed with tar balls. (N 30 12.97, W 88 11.69; N 30 12.67, W 89 09.97)
Tar balls in booms. (N 30 13.57, W 89 06.11)
Tar balls and mousse about 25 inches in diameter. (N 30 16.48, W 88 47.79)
Afternoon Flight Information:
Two large streaks of sheen stretching from the west to the east for about 4 miles. (N 30 10.11, W 89 06.85)
Possible sheen. (N 30.24821667, W 88.68543333)
More Information from MDEQ staff:
Tar patties along beach from Pass Christian harbor to Long Beach harbor. Oiling coverage has decreased from previous days.
Sporadic coverage of tar patties for a 20 yard stretch east of the former Treasure Bay Casino site. (N 30 23.506, W 88 56.903)
Patches of tar patties along the beaches in Harrison County at the following locations: (N 30 19.701, W 89 11.950; N 30 19.305, W 89 13.367; N 30 19.145; W 89 13.773; N 30 18.322, W 89 16.328; N 30 18.207, W 89 17.307; N 30 20.210, W 89 10.193; N 30 21.341, W 89 07.070)
Significant coverage of tar ball and tar patties along the western end of West Belle Fontaine beach in Jackson County. (N 30 44.843, W 88 20.983)
SCAT team performed aerial reconnaissance of the barrier islands. No significant increase of onshore oil was observed. Assessments were performed on foot beginning at the southwestern edge of Cat Island. Tar balls and patties were found at a frequency of less than one percent to two percent in the middle tidal zone and less than one percent to three percent in the lower tidal zone. Some tar patties were observed in the water. Further to the east a 10 meter by 20 meter patch of pooled oil was found and was reported.
SCAT team performed assessments along the Back Bay of Biloxi. The team inspected approximately eight km of shoreline most of which was made up of marsh and seawall. Observations were made by boat, and on foot. No trace of oil was discovered over any of the observed area.
SCAT team performed assessments along Bay St. Louis beginning at the staging area east of the Highway 90 Bridge. Assessments were performed primarily along sea wall and marsh mixed with some sandy beaches. There was no oil observed throughout the SCAT assessment.
SCAT team performed assessments along the south shore of Horn Island starting at MSJK-1 Segment 28 and walked west along the coastline. In segment 27, tar balls and patties were found at a frequency of one percent in the middle and upper tidal zones and 20 percent in the super tidal zone. Some tar balls were found to be under the sand at a depth of about four inches. In segment 26 tar balls and patties were found at a frequency of 10 percent in the super tidal zone and less than one percent in the upper and middle tidal zones. From segments 25 to 16, tar balls and patties were observed at frequencies ranging from 10 to 20 percent in the super tidal zone and from one to three percent in the middle and upper tidal zones. In segment 24 some tar balls were found under the sand at a depth of two inches. In segment 22, oiled rig debris was discovered, location logged and pictures taken. In segment 20, oil was found in a tidal pool in the super tidal zone. Segment 15 had been recently cleaned by a crew and had less than one percent oil coverage.
Mississippi Skimmer Activities
Twelve of Mississippi’s skimmers were actively operating and reported successful recovery.
Patches of tar balls and weathered oil are skimmed and corralled by Vessels of Opportunity and BP contractors. Skimming is used to remove streams of emulsified oil, tar balls, and tar patties. Tar balls and mousse patties on land are removed with shovels and rakes.
More information and links about MDEQ’s and DMR’s roles in oil spill response are available at www.deq.state.ms.us/oilspill and www.dmr.state.ms.us/DMR/oil-spill.htm.
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