Perdue says NC will be ready if Gulf oil arrives

NC Governor Beverly Perdue

June 15, 2010 6:01:59 PM PDT
North Carolina Governor Beverly Perdue said Tuesday that the state will be ready if oil from the massive spill in the Gulf of Mexico comes our way.

Scientists have computer models that show oil could enter the loop current that moves around Florida and up the East Coast. If that happens, oil could get to North Carolina by early next month, but scientists caution the models are not a forecast.

Perdue told a group of legislative leaders Tuesday that she's been told there is only a slim chance that oil will reach North Carolina shores.

"We feel very comfortable that North Carolina's beaches are open. They're beautiful. The tourism season is red hot and what we want everybody to understand that, that there is no impact from the oil spill on North Carolina's coast," she told reporters after the meeting.

But Perdue says the state will be ready if the worst happens. The emergency management division is to provide Perdue with an updated oil response plan by June 21.

Perdue says we're not likely to see any sheen or thick globs of oil like we've seen down south. Experts tell her that by the time any oil arrives here it would be so diluted that it would likely be in the form of tar balls

Still, state agencies are being proactive.

"Our people are already in the process of doing the pre-water sampling," she explained.

They're establishing a baseline now so they'll be able to detect any changes in the water.

The Coast Guard says it has the booms and chemical dispersants needed to take on the oil if it arrives.

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