Cleanup Operations Completed for California’s Orange and San Diego County Beaches

Orange County shoreline cleanup
Members of the Orange County shoreline cleanup and assessment team conduct cleanup operations near Corona Del Mar State Beach Park, California, on Oct. 6, 2021. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Janessa Warschkow.

Unified Command officials say that affected shoreline segments of Orange and San Diego counties impacted by a Southern California oil spill have been returned to their original condition. The spill response has now entered a transition period, with the Unified Command monitoring tar ball and oiling incidents along with associated sampling results to determine the source of the oil.

The multi-agency response to the oil spill began on Oct. 2, 2021. Once the Unified Command determines that the transition period should end, the response will officially conclude, the officials said.

Meanwhile, cleanup crews are prepared to respond to further oiling and shoreline monitoring is to continue, with the public asked to report any sizeable sightings of oil or oily debris to the National Response Center hotline at 1-800-424-8802.

California Department of Fish and Wildlife Patrol Lieutenant Christian Corbo commended hundreds of responders who participated in the cleanup and said that a strong partnership between federal, state and local agencies also proved crucial in mass coordination efforts to clean up the beaches, including scientists, wildlife care experts, technical specialists and law enforcement personnel.

Oiled sands and debris are being disposed of in a special landfill designed for petroleum-contaminated material. The pipeline from which the oil spilled remains shut down. The Pipeline Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PMHSA) has approved Amplify Energy’s proposed pipeline repair and flushing procedure, and temporary repairs have been completed.

Representatives from PHMSA, the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement and the state fire marshal are to oversee flushing operations and remove the remaining product from the line.

Anyone impacted by the oil spill who needs to file a claim is advised to call 1-866-985-8366.

Meanwhile, an investigation into the spill is ongoing by the U.S. Coast Guard and National Transportation Safety Board.