Assemblyman Das Williams, D-Carpinteria, chairman of the Natural Resources Committee, expressed his concern regarding the unfortunate oil spill on one of the most popular beaches in the Central Coast of California.

Refugio State Beach is located in the 37th Assembly District.

“I am deeply saddened and angered to see our beautiful Gaviota coast covered in crude oil and one of our most beloved beaches and campground closed,” Williams said. “I am grateful for the first responders and cleanup crews who are working to limit the damage and address the mess.”

This was a massive event. Updated reports say 21,000 gallons of crude were spilled. As chairman of the Natural Resources Committee, Assemblyman Williams will be calling for an oversight hearing the get clear answers on what happened and why the spill was not promptly reported by officials.

“It is unacceptable that local people on the bluffs were the first ones to report the spill before the oil company did,” Williams said. “We will also seek answers through a district hearing in the coming days to understand how a breach in the leak detection technology this serious could have occurred without raising alarms to the pipeline operator. We need answers to these serious questions and to find out why the response communication apparently broke down.”

Assemblyman Williams added that something that people can do to try to avoid tragedies like this is to reduce their consumption of gas. Lowering petroleum demand is important, he concluded.

— Lourdes Jimenez is the chief of staff for Assemblyman Das Williams.