BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — State regulators have closed an oyster harvest area after a crewboat struck a sealed wellhead, releasing oily water into a bay off Plaquemines Parish.
The Departments of Health and Hospitals and Wildlife and Fisheries on Wednesday shut Area 11, west of the Mississippi River, effective at sunset Wednesday. The area will remain closed indefinitely until oysters from the area are determined safe to eat.
The U.S. Coast Guard says the boat sheared an inactive wellhead Tuesday night, causing the oil spill. Officials say less than 840 gallons of oil a day is coming from the well owned by Swift Energy Co. of Houston.
DHH planned Thursday to send personnel to assess the area to determine if more closures are necessary.