UPDATE — Fuel spill in Port Angeles Harbor was smaller than first reported. Cleanup continues.
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Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News
An oil spill response boat works next to a fuel barge at the west end of Port Angeles Harbor on Wednesday after fuel was spilled into the harbor.

By Peninsula Daily News staff

PORT ANGELES — A spill of heavy fuel into the Port Angeles Harbor this morning wasn't as big as officials originally thought, the state Department of Ecology said.
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Ecology spokesman Curt Hart said about 50 to 100 gallons spilled into the water from a barge that overflowed as it was being fueled at the Tesoro Port Angeles Terminal.

The rest of the fuel stayed on the deck of the barge.

The spill into the harbor was originally estimated at 840 gallons.

Hart said the other good news is that the spill was contained by the booms set up around the barge before the fueling, and that no injured wildlife had been found.

Crews are working to get the fuel out of the water.

Here's our earlier story:

By Arwyn Rice
Peninsula Daily News
PORT ANGELES — An 840-gallon heavy fuel spill in Port Angeles Harbor triggered a major cleanup response early this morning.

The spill was reported at 3:20 a.m., after a fuel barge owned by Harley Marine Services was overfilled during fueling operations at the Tesoro Port Angeles Terminal, said Curt Hart, state Department of Ecology spokesman.

A precautionary oil boom placed around the barge by Global Diving and Salvage before fueling began seems to have contained most of the spill, but representatives of Ecology and the state Department of Fish and Wildlife will make a flight over the area this morning to see if any of the oil escaped the boom, Hart said.

Fish and Wildlife will determine if any habitat areas are threatened by the oil, he said.

The U.S. Coast Guard, Marine Spill Response Corp., and Global Diving and Salvage responded to the clean-up.

The Marine Spill Response Corp. maintains a pollution response ship in Port Angeles Harbor, the W.C. Park Responder.

The ship, built in 1992, is approximately 210 feet long, has temporary storage for 4,000 barrels of recovered petroleum products and has the ability to separate oil and water aboard ship using two oil-water separation systems.

A Coast Guard 25-foot response boat crew from Coast Guard Air Station/Sector Field Office Port Angeles was on scene this morning to maintain a safety zone around the barge and incident management personnel from Coast Guard Sector Puget Sound were en route, said Shawn Eggert, spokesman for the Coast Guard.

An Ecology team was also en route to Port Angeles, Hart said this morning.
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Reporter Arwyn Rice can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5070, or at arwyn.rice@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: November 07. 2012 3:18PM
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