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Oil spill in Brooklyn waterway

People are still being warned not to enter a popular Brooklyn waterwayafter an estimated 1,000 gallons of oil and other hazardous materialsspilled late last week into Paerdegat Basin.

People are still being warned not to enter a popular Brooklyn waterway after an estimated 1,000 gallons of oil and other hazardous materials spilled late last week into Paerdegat Basin.



National Grid was closing up an old pipe with cement Thursday evening when it ruptured, sending a mixture of gas, compressor oil, turbine oil and condensate into the basin, which is bordered by four yacht clubs and a canoe club, and flows into wildlife-rich Jamaica Bay.



“I was out there [Saturday], and the smell was really bad,” said Geoffrey Croft, president of the watchdog group NYC Park Advocates. “You could see the oil sheen in the water.”



Walter Lewandowski, commodore of the Sebago Canoe Club, told Metro that the accident was unfortunate, particularly since water quality in Paerdegat Basin had vastly improved over the past few years.



“We’re seeing a lot more wildlife,” including herons, ospreys and schools of small bait fish, Lewandowski said.



The New York City Office of Emergency Management has advised the public to avoid fishing and boating in the area until further notice.



National Grid, meanwhile, has hired an oil spill contractor to remediate the mess. So far, it has managed to remove about 750 gallons of oil and water mixture with the help of booms, absorbent pads and vacuum trucks, according to Erik Swanson, a petty officer with the U.S. Coast Guard, which is overseeing the cleanup efforts.



“Right now our goal is to get it cleaned up as quickly as possible,” Swanson said.

 
 
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