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Oil Spill Closes Mississippi to Gulf of Mexico

400,000 Gallons of No. 6 fuel Oil Spilled

A LIberian-flaagged tanker collieded with a barge under tow by a tug near the Harvey Locks on the Mississippi on Wednesday. The barge was carrying 400,000 Gallons of No. 6 fuel Oil, which is thick, heavy, dirty fuel. The barge split in two, dumping its contents into the river.

Consequently, the river is now closed from mile marker 97 to the Gulf of Mexico. The port loses approximately $100,000 in revenue daily for every day the river is closed to commerical traffic. That does not include the losses to terminal operators, stevedores, tug boat operators and other private businesses.

The operator of the tug boat pulling the barge only had an apprentice mate's license. No one else on board the tug had carried a licence to operate the boat on the river. The operator of the tug should have had a master's licence.

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