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Oil Firm Agrees to Pay Fine Over Spill

November 03, 1995|PAUL ELIAS

An oil company agreed Thursday to pay a $23,000 fine for spilling oil at a Ventura County beach, while another company faces a lawsuit over five small oil spills that reached waterways.

Conoco Inc. agreed to pay the fine for accidentally spilling about 75 barrels of oil into the ocean at Solimar Beach in April, 1993, the Ventura County district attorney's office announced. The spill was discovered by nearby residents walking on the beach near Amphitheater Creek.

Company officials said the spill was caused by a broken seal on a pump and that the oil flowed down an asphalt street and poured into an unnamed creek, which dumped the oil into Amphitheater Creek.

The district attorney's office also announced it has filed a civil suit against Shell Western E & P Inc., alleging that four small spills in the past two years briefly contaminated Diablo Canyon Creek and the Ventura River. None of the alleged spills involved more than 10 barrels of oil, the suit states.

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