Two men traveling with stolen passports on a missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner were Iranians who had bought tickets to Europe and were probably not terrorists, law enforcement officials said Tuesday.More >>
More than four days after a Malaysian jetliner went missing on route to Beijing, authorities acknowledged Wednesday they didn't know in which direction the plane and its 239 passengers was heading when it disappeared,...More >>
About two dozen clean-up workers spent the day Monday picking up small tar balls along the eastern shore of Cat Island. The contractor hired by BP to clean that barrier island has a command center set-up on a barge that's anchored along the north side of the island.
On this week marking the one year anniversary of the oil spill, WLOX News accompanied DEQ representatives on a tour of Cat Island.
As our boat approached from the north, it was easy to spot the beauty of this barrier island. Cat Island is unique because such a large portion of the island is privately owned.
Island houses rebuilt since Katrina can be seen along the canal that cuts through this picturesque getaway.
As he gave a quick tour, Cat Island caretaker Walter Gaudin admits he's loved living here for 11 years.
"It's called serenity," said the elderly man, a big smile across his face.
We found the clean-up crews on the eastern shore. As they've done for many months, workers scoured the sand picking up tar balls.
"Right now on the east phase we have small tar balls. We've collected all the tar mats that were visible, that we could see. And over on the western tip of the island we still have some mats that we're recovering over there," said clean-up supervisor William Pitts.
The shaking machine is called a sand guppy. It sifts the sand, separating the weathered oil.
"Shakes it up and lets the sand fall through and keeps the little pieces on top," said a worker, as he demonstrated the machine.
DEQ supervisor Nick Gatian is pleased with the progress he sees on Cat Island.
"It's been impacted about the same as the other islands. So, they continue to work at it and do the assessments on a routine basis to find where the material is at. And they've got the crews out there, as we saw today, picking it up," he said.
"We pull different amounts off daily. It really depends on the area we're working in and what's uncovered at the time, what we're able to collect," Pitts explained.
Cat Island's caretaker is happy with what's been happening here.
"Great, great. They're doing a real good job," said Gaudin.
There's no easy answer at to how long the clean-up will continue. The DEQ said until oil material is no longer washing ashore.
"Feel like we're fortunate. Much less than the worst case scenario that we could have had," said Gatian.
BP recently purchased a portion of Cat Island from private owners. The area bought by the oil company includes that eastern shore, where the clean-up crews were working this day.
Wednesday, April 20 2011 6:14 PM EDT2011-04-20 22:14:15 GMT
A large group of fishermen, environmentalists and concerned citizens gathered beside a shrimp boat dock in Biloxi on Wednesday to remember the victims of the BP oil rig explosion, and lament the ongoing impact of that disaster which happened one year ago.More >>
Wednesday, April 20 2011 9:52 AM EDT2011-04-20 13:52:45 GMT
One year after the BP oil spill in the Gulf, tourism related businesses on the Mississippi Gulf Coast are still struggling to recover their losses. Most business owners are cautiously optimistic that things will be better this year, but they know nothing is certain.More >>
Wednesday, April 20 2011 8:26 AM EDT2011-04-20 12:26:36 GMT
Louis Skrmetta is hoping for a busy summer season for Ship Island Excursions. Opening day, the family ferry business took more than 500 visitors to the island. That's good news, since last year his business was down by about 60 percent because of the oil spill.More >>
Tuesday, April 19 2011 3:02 PM EDT2011-04-19 19:02:47 GMT
The director of the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality says she's pleased with the response and clean-up of the oil on this week's one year anniversary of the BP oil spill. Trudy Fisher says the biggest challenge still remaining is perception.More >>
Tuesday, April 19 2011 1:27 PM EDT2011-04-19 17:27:34 GMT
Just one day before the one year anniversary of the Gulf oil spill, NOAA announced that the last area of federal waters has reopened to fishing. The last 1,041 square miles of Gulf waters immediately surrounding the Deepwater Horizon wellhead is now open to commercial and recreational fishing.More >>
Wednesday, April 20 2011 10:42 PM EDT2011-04-21 02:42:31 GMT
Many individuals and businesses along the Mississippi Gulf Coast continue to wait for final payments for costs and damages as a result of the BP oil spill. AJ Giardina spoke with a few individuals who say the Gulf Coast Claims Facility is using delay tactics in sending out checks.More >>
Wednesday, April 20 2011 10:32 PM EDT2011-04-21 02:32:55 GMT
Removing all the oil from Mississippi's barrier islands is a bit like chasing a moving target. As soon as one section of beach is cleaned, the dynamics of wind and waves take over, shifting sand to reveal new sections of tar balls and oil patties.More >>
Use the numbers below to contact the Deepwater Horizon Incident Joint Information Center on matters regarding the oil slick in Gulf of Mexico: Report oiled shoreline or request volunteer information:More >>
1 Julian Price Place
Charlotte, NC 28208