Oil spill reported on North Slope

Posted: Friday, February 20, 2009

ANCHORAGE - Environmental regulators are investigating a small spill at Alaska's Prudhoe Bay.

Crews are cleaning up the spill of crude oil, natural gas and water drawn from a drill site at the nation's largest oil field. The volume is unknown.

Steve Rinehart, spokesman for field operator BP PLC, says a worker making rounds Wednesday heard a hiss and discovered a drip from a pipeline that carries production fluids to a processing center.

Rinehart says the spill appears to be confined to the plant's gravel pad.

He says 11 wells involved have been shut off and crews are working to reroute production.

The 11 wells account for 1,300 barrels of crude in daily production. Prudhoe's production for February is averaging 391,000 barrels a day.

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