A major incident was declared in Dorset following an oil leak from an onshore field. In the wake of the incident, The UK Health Security Agency in the South West has said members of the public should not swim in Poole Harbour.
The spillage occurred on Sunday evening (March 27), when 200 barrels of reservoir fluid, consisting of 85 percent water and 15 percent oil, leaked into the water, affected the local area around it.
The leak came from Southern England, at the Wytch Farm facility in the Purbecks, which is one of the largest onshore oil fields in Europe and was taken over by Perenco in 2011, who took it off BP’s hands.
Philip Broadhead, the leader of Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council, said that although the leak was contained, oil had escaped into the water and surrounding area in a statement.
He said: "As leader of the council I will, along with the senior council team, be working to see what implications this leak may have and what action we may need to take.
"It is of course extremely disappointing to hear of this event, and while there will be a time later for anger and investigation, our focus now must be on ensuring we can mitigate any impacts of this situation."
Franck Dy, Perenco’s Wytch Farm general manager, said: "Any spill is an extremely serious matter and a full investigation will be launched to ascertain what happened in Poole Harbour. It is important to stress that the situation is under control, with the discharge of fluids having been stopped and the spill is being contained."