Cleanup Of Oil Spill In South Coast Creek Complete
An onshore oil leak on the South Coast, which injured or killed some wildlife, has now been fully cleaned up.
The problem was first discovered in July in Santa Barbara County’s Toro Canyon Creek area. The oil came from an abandoned oil well from the 1880s. The well had a system in place to control leakage, but it was damaged by the 2017 Thomas brush fire.
More than 400 gallons of oil leaked from the well site and traveled about 300 yards to the creek channel. The spill killed at least 17 birds, and 13 bats. More than 90 oiled frogs were recovered from the area.
The spill cleanup has been completed, with contaminated soil removed, and plants cleaned. The cleaned frogs were re-released back into the creek. Work will continue for the next few months to repair the damaged habitat. The oil well capping system was repaired, but officials are looking at possible long-term fixes.