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Responders are attempting to stop what could be thousands of barrels of oil from reaching a lake that provides drinking water. (Photo: Generation Progress/flickr/cc)

'Major' Oil Spill Strikes Louisiana, Threatens Waterways

'It's much bigger than they're telling us,' says area resident

Officials on Sunday are continuing work to contain what an EPA representative called a major oil spill in northwestern Louisiana that could take months to clean up.

The rupture of Sunoco Logistics' Mid-Valley pipeline near Mooringsport in Caddo Parish on Monday released an estimated 4,000 barrels of crude oil.

That amount makes it one of this year's largest spills, the Wall Street Journal reports, citing federal records.

KTBS reports: "Raw oil is coating around a four mile section of Tete Bayou." The spill response team is attempting to stop the oil from flowing into Caddo Lake, which provides drinking water for several municipalities in Louisiana and Texas.

"My biggest concern is that it's much worse than people realize and that the long-term effects are going to be much worse," an area property owner told KSLA.

"Anything that eats or rinks from the water is not going to live—crawfish, frogs. And they found a snake that was dead."

"It's much bigger than they're telling us," she said.

The Shreveport Times reports that the spill "has already killed dozens of fish and some reptiles" and states that "the pungent odor of oil fills the air closer to the work site."

A spokesperson for Sunoco told press Saturday that 1,900 barrels of oil have been recovered so far.

Officials say they do not yet know the cause of the pipeline rupture or exact amount of oil spilled.

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