Mystery Oil Pollution Closes Even More California Beaches


Mystery Oil Pollution Closes Even More California Beaches

The normally pristine beaches of California are under siege this summer, as a pipline spill mid-May closed a number if beaches in a protected sanctuary and new beaches were closed late this week because of more oil leakage.

Officials said Thursday that clean-up workers had made "significant progress," but the beaches remained closed into the weekend and authorities were not hopefully they would re-open.

"The beaches are closed until we make a determination that it's safe," said US Coast Guard spokeswoman Charlene Downey. The beaches include El Segundo, Manhattan, Hermosa and Redondo.

The unidentified pollution came ashore barely a week after thousands of gallons of oil spilled into the ocean, from a ruptured pipe near Santa Barbara, about 100 miles northwest up the coast.

The two beaches fouled by some 105,000 gallons from the ruptured pipeline were closed, and will remain so until June 4th, officials said Thursday. Fishing rights were also suspended within hundreds of miles in the area.

The mysterious new oil raises concerns that either the original pipeline spill is far worse than last suspected or that there may be a new, undisclosed spill which is leaking fresh oil.

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