Teams of federal and Exxon Mobile workers in Montana are trying to contain and assess the damage from tens of thousands of gallons of crude oil that gushed from a ruptured pipe beneath the banks of the Yellowstone River over the weekend.
Exxon Mobile estimated that up to 1,000 barrels, or 42,000 gallons, spilled Friday night before the flow from the damaged 12-inch pipeline was stopped.
Exxon Mobil Pipeline Co. President Gary Pruessing said that the pipeline had been shut down in May because of concerns over the rising waters on the Yellowstone, the Associate Press reported. He said the company decided to restart the line after examining its safety record and deciding the risk was low.
The U.S. Department of Transportation, which oversees pipelines, last year issued a warning letter to Exxon Mobil that cited seven safety violations along the ruptured Silvertip pipeline. Two of the warnings faulted the company for its emergency response and pipeline corrosion training, the AP reported.
Shinawatra Elected Thailand’s First Female Prime Minister
Yingluck Shinawatra won a landmark election to become Thailand’s first female prime minister five years after her brother was ousted in a military coup. The election marked a rebuke of the military-backed establishment that deposed Thaksin Shinawatra, and the opposition’s strong mandate in parliament was likely to boost stability in the short-term, the AP reported.
Syrian Troops Seal Off City of Hama
Syrian troops raided homes and made sweeping arrests in Hama on Monday before sealing off the city just days after about 300,000 protesters there held the largest demonstration since the uprising began against President Bashar Assad in mid-March.
In 1982, Assad’s late father and predecessor, Hafez Assad, ordered his troops to crush a rebellion in Hama by Sunni fundamentalists, killing between 10,000 and 25,000 people.
On the Rundown Friday, we updated where several of the countries tied to the “Arab Spring” political uprisings stand currently.
Morocco Protesters Demand More Rights
Thousands of pro-democracy activists in Morocco protested Sunday to demand more reforms two days after voters overwhelmingly approved a new constitution the king said will expand freedoms. The North African country of 32 million has been swept by pro-democracy protests denouncing low wages, poor education and perceptions of widespread government corruption.
But protesters have not called for the ouster of King Mohammed VI, who remains popular. Instead, they have called for the curtailing of his absolute powers and more official accountability.
Fox News’ Political Twitter Account Hacked
Fox News’ political Twitter account was hacked on Monday and sent several false tweets saying that President Barack Obama had been shot dead. There was no immediate reaction from the White House and the Secret Service declined to comment.
Fox’s political Twitter account has more than 34,000 followers.