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Ca. Pipeline Spills 10,000 Gallons

May 9, 1998

LONG BEACH, Calif. (AP) _ An underground pipeline carrying crude oil burst Friday and splattered 10,000 gallons of smelly, black goo through a neighborhood.

The Atlantic Richfield Co. said its pipeline broke and spread oil throughout a five-block area before the flow was cut off about an hour later.

It wasn’t known what caused the rupture of the 14-inch-wide pipeline, which lies 3 to 6 feet below the street, Arco spokesman Paul Langland said.

``Residents claimed they heard an explosion _ that was the asphalt being torn out of the ground when it initially burst,″ said Fire Department Battalion Chief Jack Bender.

Crews used sand bags, absorbent cloth and vacuums to sop up the mess. Oil collected in big pools along a roadway and coated lawns, fences and 15 cars near the eruption, Bender said.

The cleanup was expected to continue throughout the day and possibly into the weekend, Bender said.

The pipeline carries oil from the San Joaquin Valley to refineries in the harbor-area communities of Wilmington and Carson, Langland said.

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