- uploaded: Jul 5, 2011
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"Crews in Montana are working to prevent a 25-mile plume from an oil spill from fouling the air and water in around the Yellowstone River.
An ExxonMobil pipeline that runs under the river ruptured Saturday, leaking hundreds of barrels of oil into the waterway.
The break forced municipalities and irrigation districts downstream to close intakes.
The rupture happened near Billings in south-central Montana and led to temporary evacuations of hundreds of residents along a 20-mile stretch. Cleanup crews deployed booms and absorbent material as the plume moved downstream at an estimated 5 to 7 mph.
The river has no dams on the path it takes to connect with the Missouri River just across the Montana border in North Dakota. It was unclear how far the plume might travel.
Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer said, in his words, "The parties responsible will restore the Yellowstone River."
An ExxonMobil spokeswoman said the pipe leaked an estimated 750
to 1,000 barrels of oil for about a half-hour before it was shut down. Other Exxon officials had estimated that up to 42,000 gallons of crude oil escaped."