Oil spill troubles Williams

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — The government of Newfoundland and Labrador will adopt best practices to avoid a major oil spill off its coast, Premier Danny Williams promised on Monday.

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — The government of Newfoundland and Labrador will adopt best practices to avoid a major oil spill off its coast, Premier Danny Williams promised on Monday.

Williams told the legislature that he is troubled by what he sees unfolding in the Gulf of Mexico where a massive spill threatens the coast of several southern states.

“I wonder if the technology is able to keep up with the problems,” he said in answer to an Opposition question.

“The one thing that I think will come from this process is that better technology will be developed.”

Williams said best practices would quickly be adopted to deal with conditions in the north Atlantic where high seas and weather are always factors on the offshore.

The premier said given that the oil rigs off Newfoundland are considerably farther from land than those in the Gulf of Mexico, it is unlikely that spilled oil would hit the coast or impact fish stocks.

“There is a lower likelihood that oil would come ashore in Newfoundland, but that’s not to say that it wouldn’t,” Williams warned.

“I’m not trying to minimize the circumstances under any situation and we’ll make sure that we monitor this situation very closely.”

Rig operator BP is still trying to halt the leak that has already spilled hundreds of thousands of gallons of crude into the Gulf of Mexico.