Bayelsa State: Major Oil Spill Feared
Aug 22, 2011 – Shell Nigeria is still battling with its host communities in order to get close to the sites of a major leak which it is blaming on sabotage.
The six leaks happened along the Okordia-Rumuekpe trunkline in Ikarama, Bayelsa state at some point in the last three weeks. This was disclosed earlier today by a Shell staff who preferred to remain anonymous. According to our source, the company only became aware of the leaks on Friday when there was a fire outbreak along the line.
The fire is also being blamed on sabateurs, and Shell has been unable to get personnel near to the blaze site due to a blockade from members of the community.
A helicopter flight over the fire late on Friday night confirmed that the fire had burned itself out. No injuries have been reported, but there are unconfirmed reports that an entire village was engulfed by the inferno.
Our source said that the company estimates that the total amount of oil spilled or possibly spilled from the six leaks on the line is 400 barrels. The line was shut in on Friday meaning no further leaks have occured.
However, Shell is still trying to engage with the local community in an effort to get at the spill sites with a view to making repairs.