Ship fear investigated after oil leak

TEAMS of volunteers are today still hard at work clearing a 12-mile section of coastline affected by an oil slick.But environmental workers are confident the slick was not going to cause the long-term catastrophe some had initially feared.

TEAMS of volunteers are today still hard at work clearing a 12-mile section of coastline affected by an oil slick.

But environmental workers are confident the slick was not going to cause the long-term catastrophe some had initially feared.

Lumps of oil washed up were described by Tendring District Council spokesman Mike Page as 'widespread, but light.' He said: "Thankfully, the tide dissipates the oil so this will avoid a lot of clearing."

Suffolk Coastal District Council is also carefully monitoring oil currently being washed up along the coastline.


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Chris Slemmings, its cabinet member for the environment, said: "We are working closely with the Environment Agency over the progress of this oil and any required cleaning up of the beach will be undertaken."

The source of the oil slick has yet to be identified, but there are fears lumps of the emulsified oil, which are up to 1ft across, could have come from a pipeline spillage at Felixstowe Port last week.

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Suffolk Coastal District Council said it understood the Environment Agency was investigating whether the oil had come from the cargo ship the Tricolor, which is submerged in the English Channel, as it appeared to be a different type from that which came from the Felixstowe spillage.

It happened on February 13 when a pipeline operated by Felixstowe Tank Developments Limited severed, spilling an estimated 2,000 gallons of the oil into the Orwell estuary.

The company has declined to comment.

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