Barbour says oil on Petit Bois Island - - The News for South Mississippi

Barbour says oil on Petit Bois Island

JACKSON, MS (WLOX) - Governor Haley Barbour said Tuesday afternoon that oil has been spotted on Petit Bois Island. He said a strand of caramel colored oil was found two miles east of the western tip of Petit Bois Island.

"This is the first significant amount of oil residue to hit Mississippi," Barbour said in a teleconference with the media. "While it's the first, it won't be the last."

The oil was spotted Tuesday morning just after 9am. He said it was just one strand of oil, and extended less than two feet below the surface of the water.

He described the oil as a "mousse," saying it wasn't a liquid anymore, but hadn't dried up into a solid.

"We are told it's not toxic."

Barbour expected the clean up to take about one day, with workers shoveling the oil into bags, and carrying the bags off for disposal.

He reminded everyone that we will likely see more oil reaching our barrier islands in the coming days, but promised the state is fighting hard "to keep oil out of the Mississippi Sound."

"At this point, we are ready to fight this fight," Barbour said. "And for tourists who are coming to Biloxi or Gulfport or anywhere else on the Gulf Coast, if they were there today, they would have no idea of anything happening."

Barbour said most of what we're looking at is 35 miles out, "which is a good bit closer than it was a week ago." @@

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