M/V Stuyvesant Fuel Oil Spill

State TrusteeAO Bureau

Also Known As

None

Incident Type

Oil

State

California

Case Status

Restoration

Location

Humboldt County coast

Authority

OPA

Contaminants of Concern Include

Oil

Affected DOI Resources Include

Migratory Birds, Threatened and Endangered Species

Financial Summary

Restoration Funds Collected:

$2,049,968.60

*Restoration Funds Allocated:

$2,005,091.79

*Restoration Funds Remaining:

$200,698.63

* Restoration Funds can contain multiple settlements/projects. All collections are placed in interest bearing accounts. For detailed information on individual settlements/ projects please visit: NRDAR Status Report

Case Description

On September 6, 1999, the Stuyvesant spilled at least 2100 gallons of Intermediate Fuel Oil 180 (IFO-180) into the Pacific Ocean near the mouth of Humboldt Bay, near Eureka, California. The incident began at approximately 5:00 pm at least one nautical mile offshore from the channel into Humboldt Bay. A dredge arm on the Stuyvesant punctured one of its fuel tanks. At that time, however, the puncture was below the water line and pressure from the ocean water may have limited the release of oil. The dredge proceeded to a point approximately four miles off the North Spit where it dumped its dredge spoils. At this time, 6:54 pm, the vessel became much lighter, the puncture in the fuel tank rose above the water line, and the oil leak may have begun in earnest. The vessel proceeded to return to Humboldt Bay and was inside the channel between the North and South Spits at approximately 7:30 pm. An out-going tide prevented oil from entering Humboldt Bay.

At this point, the vessel turned around and headed back out to sea. By 8:22 pm, the Stuyvesant was approximately three miles offshore, directly out from the channel entrance. At this time, oil was moved to other compartments in the vessel in an effort to stem the leak. At 11:30 pm, the vessel moved further offshore. By 4:10 am on September 7, the Stuyvesant was approximately 15 miles offshore and the leak was stopped. It appeared that most of the escaped oil was released within four miles of the coastline.

Strong north winds (17 knots at the Eel River Buoy) initially spread oil to the south. However, these were replaced with south winds (15 knots) by the afternoon of September 7. Strong south winds prevailed for most of the ensuing days, causing the oil to spread primarily to the north. Overflights by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) identified oil slicks and tarballs in the ocean as far as 15 miles offshore and as far north as Patrick’s Point.

Credit: California Dept of Fish and Wildlife


Case Documents


 Document TypeDocument NameDocument Date

Settlement

 Consent Decree Consent Decree 09/29/2006

Restoration

 Restoration Implementation Report 2011 Expenditure Report 10/28/2011
 Restoration Monitoring Report 2012 Expenditure Report 12/28/2012
 Restoration Implementation Report Mitigate Visitor Use Impacts at Pelican and Cormorant Non-breeding Sites 10/28/2011
 Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment Restoration Plan 06/01/2007

Map View

Case Contact

San Francisco Bay-Delta Fish and Wildlife

Sacramento, CA | (916) 930-5603 | http://www.fws.gov/sfbaydelta/

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