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Maritime and Coastguard Agency to stop oil spill reaching Kent coast

Pollution experts and agencies are working against the clock to stop an oil spill heading for the county's coast.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) are using offshore containment and recovery equipment, as well as shoreline equipment to prevent the devastating impact of any oil coming ashore.

What an oil spill beach clean up can look like
What an oil spill beach clean up can look like

Vessels are in the area to monitor the spill and possible causes are being investigated.

Latest models suggest the oil is moving more slowly towards the coast, providing environmental partners more time to minimise the impact.

A spokesman for the MCA said: “We have already mobilised our oil spill response contractor to do all we can to deal with the consequences from this spill.

"Those contractors will be working to remove pollutants and minimise any potential pollutants coming to shore.

“We continue to monitor the situation through regular surveillance flights across the area and will update our ongoing response plan in response to that information.

Part of Kent's coastline
Part of Kent's coastline

"As well as this, we are working with local partners to ensure a coordinated response.

“Samples of the oil will be collected for testing to see if the source can be identified.”

The first report of a possible oil slick was made by a Royal Navy vessel.

Further investigations were then carried out to establish what the substance is and how much there is.

It appears that this slick is the only oil and it is not a continuous stream.

In the event of the oil coming ashore the MCA would advise and support local authorities during beach clean ups.

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