A pipe owned by LLOG Exploration Company recently spilled approx. 393,000 gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico. This is the largest oil spill since the Deepwater Horizon incident which spewed 210 million gallons of crude oil and has led to the initiation of a five-member panel of specialists to assess the gravity of the situation, on Monday.
This having been said, this recent incident is far from the worst oil spill in the history of the United States. Sources say that somewhere between 7,950 and 9,250 barrels were spilled due to a fractured pipeline, from the Delta House floating production facility near Venice, Louisiana.
The BSEE Gulf of Mexico Region Director, Lars Herbst, stated that “This panel investigation is a critical step in ensuring BSEE determines the cause, or causes, of the incident and develops recommendations to prevent similar events from occurring in the future.”
It is important to remember that the chemicals in oil can enter the body through the lungs, by breathing them in, by swallowing, or by touching them. Studies have shown that the toxic effects of these substances are mainly neurological, respiratory, and ocular. Furthermore, they can affect both the clean-up workers as well as those who live in close proximity of the oil spill. It has been reported that symptoms include nausea, headaches, diarrhea, tight chest, and eye, nose, and throat irritation.
It is important that those living the area be cautious of everything that might be contaminated with these substances and see a doctor if any of these symptoms appear and persist for more than a few days.