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17th District Alaska Public Affairs
U.S. Coast Guard

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News Release

June 04, 2013

Marine Safety Unit Valdez

Contact: Lt. Benjamin Bauman


Office: (907) 835-7209

Coast Guard monitoring response for container leaks aboard ship in Valdez, Alaska

VALDEZ, Alaska — The Coast Guard continues to monitor the cargo ship BBC Arizona at the Valdez Container Terminal following discovery of oil leaking from multiple containers onboard the ship Friday, May 31.

Alaska Chadux deployed boom in the water around the ship as a precautionary measure and Emerald Alaska Inc. response crews, utilizing a vacuum truck, have recovered approximately 3,000 gallons of oily water accumulated on the ship’s deck as of Tuesday afternoon.

Additionally, Emerald Alaska Inc. submitted lab analysis results to the Coast Guard from two oil samples taken from the ship over the weekend. Lab results indicate no presence of polychlorinated biphenlys (PCBs), a hazardous substance sometimes associated with transformer oil.

Emerald Alaska Inc. estimates 16 of the ship's containers hold transformer oil packaged in flexible, plastic tank bladders. Based on the dimensions of two inspected containers, a single bladder could hold an estimated 6,000 gallons of product. All containers will be inspected and oil samples taken from leaking containers prior to commencing oil clean-up operations.

“Positively identifying which containers are leaking and then understanding the properties and hazards of the oil cargo in each container must occur before clean-up efforts can begin,” said Cmdr. Benjamin Hawkins, Captain of the Port, Prince William Sound. “Utilizing a phased approach to clean-up, remediation, and decontamination is crucial to the safety of responders and the maritime environment.”

Members of the Coast Guard Pacific Strike Team are scheduled to arrive in Valdez Tuesday evening to augment Valdez-based personnel during oversight and monitoring of the response.

The BBC Arizona’s owner contracted Emerald Alaska Inc. to actively manage the spill area and mitigate environmental damage.

For photos of the response or for more information contact Lt. Allie Ferko at, 907-835-7209 or cell 972-533-8185.

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