Collision between barge and fishing boat in Vancouver Island harbour leads to diesel spill

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The Canadian Coast Guard says it has completed its cleanup of a diesel spill caused by a collision between two vessels in the harbour at Parksville, B.C.

According to the Coast Guard, a barge carrying a fuel truck struck a fishing boat in the French Creek Harbour on Monday at around 11:50 a.m.

The collision caused the tank of the fuel truck to rupture, leaking diesel into the harbour. Although initial estimates suggested that 300-500 litres had been spilled, the Coast Guard said Monday evening that the final estimate is 188 litres.

The Coast Guard says it deployed absorbent pads to soak up the fuel, and spoke with the barge's owner on the next steps in the cleanup. The barge's crew was able to plug the leak and pump most of the remaining fuel into the barge's tanks.

By 7:45 p.m. PT, a Coast Guard spokesperson said "all recoverable product" had been removed from the water and the surface sheen should dissipate shortly.

Canadian law states that the owner of any barge or vessel responsible for a spill is responsible for all costs of the cleanup.