Santa Barbara Waters Hit by Another Oil Spill

The U.S. Coast Guard is responding to a report of an oil sheen in the water near Goleta Beach, Santa Barbara, California.

Coast Guard received a call from Santa Barbara County Fire Department on Wednesday morning local time, reporting that there was a large amount of sheen in the water, 1,000 yards off Goleta Beach.

The Coast Guard launched a team from the Coast Guard Marine Safety Detachment Santa Barbara to investigate.

A Coast Guard HH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Los Angeles, along with pollution responders are also en route to assist with the investigation.

Coast Guard responders reported the sheen to be approximately three square miles. Due to the characteristics of the sheen, described as a thin layer of rainbow sheening, it is considered non-recoverable. The sheen is expected to dissipate naturally.

Coast Guard crews will continue to investigate the source of the sheen. The investigation includes sampling of tar balls on the beach, obtaining samples of the sheen offshore, and sampling other possible sources such as a nearby platform and vessels that may have been in the area at the time the sheen was reported.

This is the second reported oil spill in Santa Barbara County in the last three months. Back in May, an estimated 21,000 gallons of heavy crude spilled in the area around Refugio Beach from a ruptured onshore pipeline owned and operated by Plains All-American Pipeline.

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