This disclosure, which was contained in a Press Release signed by Bamidele Odugbesan, Shell Spokesperson, said that the investigation team, which visited the site on April 16, found that unknown persons had cut out a section of the metal protection to the manifold, removed components of the pressure control system and opened the isolation valves, resulting in a spill.
The investigation, according to the release, was led by the regulators (NOSDRA and DPR) with the representatives of Bayelsa State Ministry of Environment, host communities and Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Ltd (SPDC) and the volume of spilled oil, was estimated at 27 barrels, affecting mainly the manifold grounds and part of the surrounding vegetation.
The statement further affirmed that SPDC stopped the leak soon after it occurred, deployed effective containment and began the recovery of oil, adding that no chemical dispersant has been applied.
The containment and oil recovery activities involved the use of booms, absorbent pads and vacuum truck for evacuation of recovered oil, the statement averred, stressing that Oil spill response activities are continuing while remediation will commence after initial clean-up has been done.
The release equally stated that, another leak/fire was reported on April 20 on the Kolo Creek – Rumuekpe trunk line, about 5kms from the manifold, but the fire had been extinguished, even as site observation confirmed a recently excavated ditch at the fire point.
SPDC, according to the statement, has expressed concern at the brazen damage of its facilities in parts of the Delta, and while it commended the Bayelsa State Government for its support, concluded by calling on communities and other stakeholders to join hands in the efforts to discourage the trend.