The rupture of an Exxon underwater pipeline an January 1, 1990, resulted in the release of 567,000 gallons of No. 2 fuel oil (not as light as gasoline but not as heavy as No. 6 fuel oil) into the Arthur Kill. The leak occurred from a 5-foot gash in the 12-inch pipeline that connects the Bayway Refinery at Linden, New Jersey, to the Bayonne Plant in Bayonne, New Jersey. The leak site is just south of the Goethals Bridge. The spill occurred near the New Jersey coast, but tides and winds moved the oil to the three islands in the Kill and the Staten Island coastline. The Coast Guard considered the spill to be “major” because it involved the release of more than 10,000 gallons (42 gallons = 1 barrel).
The clean-up crews recovered approximately 141,000 of the 567,000 gallons of oil. About 50 percent of the oil evaporated. Clean-up crews completed the clean-up on March 15, 1990.