City Sues Ship Owners Over Oil Spill

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The city of Los Angeles Friday sued the owners and other parties associated with the 577-foot cargo ship Istra Ace, in which faulty piping allegedly caused an oil spill in the Port of Los Angeles in 2016 that covered more than 70 acres and took 23 days to clean up.

The Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit names as defendants Istra Maritime Ltd; the vessel’s owner; Stamco Ship Management Co., the ship’s managing operator; and Mitsui Osk Lines, which chartered the vessel.

The suit seeks civil penalties under the state Fish and Game Code as well as an injunction preventing the companies from engaging in future activities that violate the state Health and Safety Code.

Representatives for the companies could not be immediately reached.

The suit states that on March 13, 2016, a worker on another barge fueling the Istra Ace saw a sheen on the water near berth 197. The gloss turned out to be oil that covered more than 70 acres in the north basin of the port, the suit states.

“The release impacted the shoreline of several marinas, pier pillings, dock floats, boat slips and boats,” the suit states.

A line of oil formed at high-tide and stuck to many marina structures, according to the complaint.

The discharge happened after inboard piping failed during the Istra Ace refueling, the suit states.

“Clean-up crews were deployed and the extensive cleanup operation lasted for 23 days,” the suit states.....

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