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Spill preparedness

Section 311 of the Clean Water Act (which amended the original Federal Water Pollution Control Act) makes illegal the discharge of oil or hazardous substances into the waters of the United States within 12 miles of the coast or where it may affect natural resources such as marine sanctuaries. The law requires any person in charge of a vessel (or a facility) who witnesses or sees a spill that discolors the surface of the water – creates a "sheen" – to report the spill to the U.S. Coast Guard or the National Response Center at 1-800-424-8802 immediately. Failure to report may result in the assessment of a civil penalty and/or criminal sanctions.

If you have questions call Mark Rielly, Spill Program Manager, 401-841-1791.

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