As if BP Oil needed anything else to go wrong. The oil giant had been hemorrhaging since the April 20 incident at their Deepwater Horizon drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico well sent thousands and thousands of barrels of oil spilling into the water. BP hasn’t been able to stop the oil; up to now, they have at least been able to contain the gushing with a cap and recover at least a portion of the oil. On Wednesday, June 23, though, the cap came off. As this oil continues to flow out and the net for how it’s spreading intensifies, my mother is now being threatened and personally affected by this spill, in the coastal, western suburb of St. Petersburg, Florida.
BP Oil Spill:
According to Examiner.com, there are now plumes of oil reaching as far as St. Petersburg, Florida. St. Petersburg is a tropical bay paradise with ritzy homes and wonderful seaside communities. What’s striking about this news is that St. Petersburg is maybe a little bit further than halfway down the state of Florida, north to south.
So, now, the BP oil spill has had a “massive oil plume (which) has…been charted now just 227 miles from St. Petersburg.” This is bad news for more of the Gulf of Mexico, bad news for hotels and restaurants which boast Gulf views, and bad news for my mother, who just recently relocated to the area.
BP Oil Spill: Personally:
My mother works for the local government in nearby Clearwater. She lives just a little north of St. Petersburg, but her work is done primarily along the bay as far north as Palm Harbor, all the way down to Pinellas Park in the St. Petersburg area. My mother was a Marine, and is always prepared for what life’s thrown her way, but she never thought this two-month-old oil spill would ever reach her neck of the woods.
This news of the oil plumes has changed her mission drastically. Her job title is health and safety inspector for the Gulf coast region’s restaurants. She does things like checks the temperature of the oil in restaurant’s frialator, or makes sure the restaurant staff is handling all the food correctly and that their safety certificates are up to date. This news of the oil spill has put all of her department on alert; their marching orders could change at any moment.
For now, though, my mother just sits like all the rest of us, watches in horror and disgust and waits. With the permanent damage yet to be felt, one is going to have to wonder whether or not a destination on the Gulf Coast will ever be worthwhile again in our lifetime.