The cleanup process has started following an oil spill in Poole Harbour

Commencing the cleanup process, 200 barrels of reservoir fluid, which includes oil, leaked into the water in close proximity to Sandbanks.

On Sunday, a significant event was declared following the leak of about 200 barrels of reservoir fluid, including oil, into the water at Poole Harbour, Dorset.

Poole Harbour Commissioners (PHC), an independent entity regulating the operations of Poole Harbour, mentioned that the leak occurred in a pipeline managed by Perenco, beneath Owers Bay. Perenco confirmed that its incident management team was instantly activated to prevent the leak and that a cleanup operation was in progress.

Franck Dy, the general manager of Perenco UK’s Wytch Farm, stated that a thorough investigation would be conducted to determine what happened in Poole Harbour, adding that “any spill is a grave issue.” He emphasized that the situation was under control, with fluid discharge ceased and the spill contained.

Until further notice, the public has been advised not to swim in the vicinity of the site or its surrounding area, while Perenco has promised to conduct a “complete investigation” into the cause of the leak. Poole, which is the largest natural harbour in Europe, is also designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSI) and is home to numerous wading bird species.

According to PHC, roughly 200 barrels of reservoir fluid have been discharged into the water column of Poole Harbour. If anyone has come into touch with the spill, PHC advises that they wash with soap and water immediately. Additionally, if the spill has come into contact with their eyes, they should rinse them with water.

Booms have been placed on either side of the leak, and PHC has implemented its oil spill plan while the pipeline is offline. The commission has also activated oil spill response companies.

In a statement, Philip Broadhead, the leader of Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council, said that the Wytch Farm oil field in Purbecks is one of Europe’s largest onshore oil fields and has been in operation since 1979. He stated that while the leak had been contained, oil had seeped into the water and the surrounding area. The council leader added that he and the senior council team would assess the impact of the leak and any necessary actions.

Meanwhile, the Environment Agency has stated that it is collaborating with the port authority and other partners in responding to the oil spill. Broadhead further stated that the focus must now be on mitigating any negative consequences of the event, rather than on anger and investigation.

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