Exxon Pipeline Spills Oil Into Yellowstone River

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Residents of the small town of Lockwood, Mont., east of Billings, are spending their holiday weekend keeping a close eye on the Yellowstone River. Not because of a possible flood, but because of an oil spill that has spread patches of brown and black slime across the river.

An ExxonMobil pipeline, which runs under the river in south-central Montana, ruptured late Friday, causing the spill. It's unclear how much oil has leaked into the river, but the nearby town of Laurel was temporarily evacuated in fear of a possible explosion. The Environmental Protection Agency is expected to be on the scene today to investigate the incident.

ExxonMobil operates three refineries in Billings.

"The pipleine has been shut down and the segment where the release occured has been isolated," reads a company statement.

Yellowstone_River.jpg
  • The Billings Gazette

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