We warned about a possible oil spill due to the excess number of container ships waiting to be unloaded in California. This is now what the Coast Guard believes may have happened.
In June we reported on the overstressed ports in California where over 60 container ships were parked, waiting to unload their cargo from Asia.
Then a few days ago we warned that these excess ships dropping anchor near the California coast may have caused the recent oil spill in the area. We also warned of a major communications outage if the boats continue to hang around in the area.
Now today, CBS reported that the Coast Guard is claiming that a cargo ship may have caused the oil spill after all.
Investigators believe a 1,200-foot cargo ship dragging anchor in rough seas caught an underwater oil pipeline and pulled it across the seafloor, months before a leak from the line fouled the Southern California coastline with crude.
A team of federal investigators trying to chase down the cause of the spill boarded the Panama-registered MSC DANIT just hours after the massive ship arrived this weekend off the Port of Long Beach, the same area where the leak was discovered in early October.
During a prior visit by the ship during a heavy storm in January, investigators believe its anchor dragged for an unknown distance before striking the 16-inch steel pipe, Coast Guard Lt. Jg. SondraKay Kneen said Sunday.
The impact would have knocked an inch-thick concrete casing off the pipe and pulled it more than 100 feet, bending but not breaking the line, Kneen said.
Still undetermined is whether the impact caused the October leak or if the line was hit by something else at a later date or failed due to a preexisting problem, Kneen said.