California Oil Spill Volunteers Clueless About Petroleum Poisoning And Dispersant Toxicity

YIKES! Barefoot volunteers, other in sandals, show up to help clean CA shoreline

SOTN Editor’s Note:
The BP Gulf Oil Spill taught everyone that oil spills by their very nature are extremely dangerous. The petrochemical toxicities both in the water and the ambient air ought to be taken very seriously. The petroleum VOCs alone can create especially perilous conditions to work in on a warm sunny day.

Therefore, many of us are aghast to see the public show up at the spill site either barefoot or in sandals. There is no protective clothing or gear being worn or given out. People are just showing up after a long drive and winging it. There are no preparatory meetings with government or company officials. Nor is there any indication that volunteers are being informed of the inherent dangers of their work.

The amount and degree of acute sickness and chronic disease which emerged from the BP Gulf oil spill was highly instructive.  Unfortunately, many in the government and corporate sectors seemed to have skipped the most important lessons.  For it was always those who worked or played closest to the GOM spill who suffered the most.  Fishermen, oil rig employees, cleanup workers, unaware boaters and curious beachgoers all manifested the worst symptoms associated with petroleum poisoning and/or over-exposure to methane gas.

Therefore, perhaps the oil spill volunteers ought to school themselves first before they do their good deed.  It appear that California government is AWOL where it concerns the Santa Barbara affected beaches so each person must look out for their own safety and well-being.  The bottom line is that an ounce of prevention is worth a ton of cure where it concerns the unavoidable toxicities produced by any oil spill.


Volunteers strive to clean CA beaches, save wildlife after massive oil spill (PHOTO, VIDEO)

William McConnaughey, 56, (R) who drove from San Diego to volunteer, carries buckets of oil from an oil slick in bare feet along the coast of Refugio State Beach in Goleta, California, United States, May 20, 2015 (Reuters / Lucy Nicholson)

Clean-up crews are working day and night to remove 100,000 gallons of oil that fouled a stretch of California coastline after a pipeline ruptured Tuesday. It is the biggest oil spill in the Santa Barbara area since 1969.

Approximately 300 clean-up workers are combing the beaches, scooping up oil- and tar-covered sand.

One of the volunteers said the effort would take “weeks, if not months.”

GALLERY: Aftermath of massive oil spill at Santa Barbara beaches

Coast Guard Captain Jennifer Williams told Reuters the clean-up will involve scrubbing soiled rocks and hosing down contaminated areas.

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Nine ships are assisting in cleaning up the stretch of affected ocean. Three are scooping up oil from the surface, while six are containing the oil slick with booms.

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Clean-up crews are asking for more buckets, gloves, shovels, water, and volunteers.

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Fishing and shellfish harvesting in the area has been suspended until further notice.

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READ MORE: Busted pipeline leaks 21,000 gallons of oil off California coast

Two popular seaside destinations, Refugio State Beach and El Capitan State Beach, will remain closed to the public during the upcoming Memorial Day holiday weekend.

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