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Tow boat strikes well, spilling more crude into Gulf of Mexico

July 27, 2010

NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- Oil is spewing from a damaged well north of a bay where officials have been fighting the spill from the BP disaster in the Gulf of Mexico.

The Coast Guard says a tow boat called Pere Ana C. hit the wellhead near Mud Lake early Tuesday. No injuries were reported.

The Coast Guard did not know who owns the small well or how much oil has leaked. But a sheen has been spotted in the lake. Jefferson Parish Councilman Chris Roberts says oil is spewing from the wellhead.

Coast Guard Lt. Brian Sattler says a helicopter has been dispatched to survey the area, which is accessible only by boat.

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Mud Lake is part of a network of bayous and lakes north of Barataria Bay, an ecologically sensitive coastal estuary where authorities have been fighting waves of oil from the Gulf spill.

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