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A federal grand jury has charged Amplify Energy (NYSE: AMPY) Corp and two of its subsidiaries with illegally and negligently releasing oil and failing to respond to alerts following a pipeline break in California in October.
The indictment charges that the corporations that own and operate the 17-mile (27-kilometer) San Pedro Bay Pipeline failed to appropriately respond to eight alerts over a period of more than 13 hours on October 1-2, according to the Department of Justice.
The indictment also charges Amplify and its subsidiaries Beta Operating Co LLC and San Pedro Bay Pipeline Co of shutting down and restarting the pipeline five times after the first five alarms were triggered, causing oil to flow for more than three hours through the damaged pipeline.
According to Amplify, the pipeline was checked, but the crew was unaware that the leak detecting device was failing at the time.
It stated in a statement that the detection system was “wrongly signaling a suspected leak at the platform where no leak could be detected by platform employees and no leak was really occurring.
“Fish were killed, birds were engulfed in oil, and wetlands were damaged as a result of the oil spill, which local officials described as an environmental disaster. A breach in the 16-inch pipeline released an estimated 25,000 gallons of crude oil about 4.7 miles west of Huntington Beach, according to the statement.
Story by : Norvisi Mawunyegah