Nfld. & Labrador

Hibernia says no visible oil sheen, days after 2,200-litre spill

Hibernia says satellite imagery Tuesday does not show any sheen from the oil spill, as production on the offshore oil platform remains shut down.

Company cites 'natural weathering' and cleanup efforts since Saturday's spill

Oil production at the Hibernia platform in Newfoundland's offshore is shut down as a second oil spill this summer is investigated. (HMDC)

Hibernia says satellite imagery Tuesday does not show any sheen from the oil spill, as production on the offshore oil platform remains shut down. 

In an update posted to its website at 4:30 p.m. NT, a spokesperson for Hibernia Management and Development Company (HMDC) said the company is continuing its response to the "release of oil and water" from the platform's drains on Saturday. 

The statement said surveillance flights, satellite imagery, and vessel surveillance conducted late Monday indicated the sheen concentration had decreased, and satellite imagery Tuesday didn't show any sheen. 

"This is attributed to natural weathering and mechanical collection and dispersion efforts," it read. 

Investigation continues

HMDC said more surveillance flights are planned for when weather permits, and vessels will now be demobilized while wildlife observation and water sampling continue. 

The company did not specify if any oiled wildlife had been observed. 

According to the company, an estimated 2,200 litres of oil leaked into the Atlantic Ocean on Saturday after a fuel valve failed, causing a power outage on the platform.

It's investigating what went wrong, and the regulator, the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board (C-NLOPB) is conducting a separate investigation. The C-NLOPB did not post an update Tuesday. 

The spill came just 48 hours after Hibernia restarted production following an estimated 12,000-litre oil spill last month, but the company said it does not believe the resumption of production is connected to the weekend spill. 

Hibernia's second oil spill this summer marks the third oil spill in the province's offshore oil sector within the last 10 months, including the biggest oil spill in the province's history, 250,000 litres, near Husky Energy's South White Rose Extension Drill Centre.

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