Tesoro cleared to offload crude
The Coast Guard rules the Barbers Point mooring safe after a weekend oil spill
Coast Guard officials gave Tesoro Hawaii approval yesterday to resume transfer operations at its mooring off Barbers Point after an oil spill over the weekend.
About 1,000 to 2,000 gallons of light crude oil spilled at midnight Saturday. Oil was being transferred from the vessel Front Sunda through Tesoro's single-point mooring off Barbers Point to the refinery on shore when one of the couplings of a hose line separated from the ship.
The Front Sunda was carrying 42 million gallons of oil and had been unloading for about 20 minutes when the line separated, said Tesoro spokesman Nathan Hokama.
Tesoro officials flew over the mooring site and along the Leeward Coast and found no signs of oil sheen on the ocean surface. Swift cleanup efforts combined with the sun, wind and current conditions contributed to containing the spill.
The Coast Guard conducted an inspection Sunday and gave Tesoro approval to resume unloading at 4 p.m. yesterday.
Officials from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service inspected nesting areas and said there were no wildlife affected by the spill.
Officials plan to inspect other nesting areas that include the Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge on Kauai.
Coast Guard Petty Officer Jennifer Johnson said they will continue their investigation of the spill to determine whether Tesoro Hawaii will face any penalties.