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Leaking from a ruptured Enbridge Inc. (ENB) oil pipeline in a Chicago suburb was stopped Sunday evening after the company located a hole in the pipeline, the Environmental Protection Agency said Monday.
"At about 7 p.m. [CDT] Sunday, a hole in the 34-inch pipe was found and it's been confirmed that the release of the oil from the pipeline has been stopped," an EPA spokeswoman said.
The EPA had set a deadline of noon Central Daylight Time Tuesday for the Calgary pipeline company to stop leaking from the pipeline in Romeoville, Ill.
Enbridge said 6,100 barrels of crude oil were released during the spill, and that only a small portion escaped from the immediate area of the leak before Enbridge crews began vacuuming up the oil.
The company didn't estimate when repairs would be completed and the line might restart. The line is operated by Enbridge's U.S. subsidiary, Enbridge Energy Partners (EEP).
It was the second oil spill in less than two months from Enbridge's nearly 60-year old Lakehead System, which transports about 70% of the crude oil from Canada.
The Romeoville leak came from Line 6A, the largest of Enbridge's three main arteries that supply U.S. markets, including the key storage hub in Cushing, Okla. The Romeoville spill followed a July leak from another Enbridge pipeline in Marshall, Mich., that spilled nearly 20,000 barrels of oil into the Kalamazoo River.
At the time of the leak the pipeline was transporting about 459,000 barrels per day of heavy crude, or about two-thirds of its capacity, Enbridge said.
Oil from the leaking pipeline bubbled up from the ground Friday near a light industrial area in Romeoville, which is about 30 miles southwest of downtown Chicago. Nearby businesses were evacuated as oil flowed into a drainage ditch, retention pond and storm sewer drain. No one was injured during the spill.
Enbridge hadn't yet estimated the cost to clean up the leak. The July 26 leak from Enbridge's Line 6B in Michigan cost it at least $35 million to $45 million to clean up. Enbridge has repaired Line 6B, but is awaiting approval from federal regulators to reopen the line. The National Transportation Safety Board is still investigating the cause of that leak.
-By Edward Welsch, Dow Jones Newswires; 403-229-9095; firstname.lastname@example.org