BP Oil Spill: Gulf Coast Update

Oil Soaked Wave in Orange Beach, AL

Effects of Oil Spill Being Felt

The BP Oil Spill is finally showing itself along the gulf coast from the beaches of Mississippi to the beaches of Pensacola, FL. The beaches of Biloxi, MS were basically deserted due to the oil coming ashore. There doesn't appear to be that much oil on these beaches yet if you judge by the number of cleanup crew assigned. Only two people from BP were there cleaning up the oil patches on the white sands. But, the effects of the oil spill are not only affecting people coming to the beaches. It is also affecting tourism and the many casinos in southern Mississippi. Casino spokesmen won't discuss how business is these days due to the BP oil spill. But, from personal observation of two of the more popular casinos, business is definitely down. What casinos fear most is a double whammy of the oil spill mixed in with a CAT 3 hurricane. Casinos have never recovered lost business from Hurricane Katrina. A bad hurricane might be too much for the casinos to handle right now. It's possible they could just take their business elsewhere. Hopefully, that will not happen. Too many businesses depend on the money that casinos bring in to the Biloxi area.

In Pensacola, FL, Pensacola Beach has been shut down due to the thick toxic oil coming ashore. This is also an important time for businesses along the "strip" at Pensacola Beach. Summer traffic brings in about 80% of their yearly business. Now, that is all gone. There is no word when Pensacola Beach will reopen. It is very unlikely it will open before Labor Day. The oil is spreading across the white sandy beaches of Destin, Panama City Beach, Ft. Walton and others on the west coast of Florida. Many predict it could reach as far down as Miami. Likewise that would be absolutely devastating for a state that is still reeling from a series of hurricanes in 2004 and 2005. There probably isn't a state that depends on tourism dollars, along the Gulf of Mexico, more than Florida. Also, as in Ms and La, the worry here is what will happen during the hurricane season. A CAT 3 hurricane near the Deepwater Horizon explosion site could make things so horrific that people can't deal with it any longer.

Here in southern Alabama, the Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo, a big tourist and fisherman annual event, has been canceled this year. This event brings in thousands and thousands of tourists and fishermen from all over the nation. This is also a big boon for the economy all over southern Alabama. Also, the annual July 4 fireworks is also canceled this year. The last thing we need is an out of control fire along the coast. In Orange Beach, the oil is also making its presence known. There are cleanup crews along the beach. But, not as many as I would have thought given the amount of oil coming on shore. Last week, acharter boat captain, who had lost all his charter fishing business, committed suicide. He had been hired by BP to help out with the cleanup out in the gulf. Apparently, he was extremely despondent over the loss of business and the seemingly never ending cleanup. Fishing is almost completely finished in the gulf for this year and years to come. Many people, such as the charter boat captain, are on the verge of losing everything they own due to this oil spill. Gulf Shores, probably the most popular beach area in Alabama, is seeing significant oi splotches also. Cleanup is ongoing here. Some areas are not nearly as bad as others. So, for the most part, Gulf Shores has not officially closed their beaches to the public. Only time will tell. But, I expect all the beach area in Gulf Shores to close down soon.

It's a pretty bleak future along the gulf coast right now. It all depends on how soon BP stops the oil gushing out of the well. Worst case scenario that I have heard is around Christmas. I simply do not believe that! I have to believe this thing is going to be capped before the end of the summer. The thing that continues to baffle me and many other people is why aren't there dozens of oil skimmers out in the gulf right now? Sure, there are a few, maybe less than the fingers on one hand. But, there should many of them by now. It's frustrating to see the large numbers of pelicans, herons, turtles and dolphins washing up on our shores. People are heroically trying to save them. But, it is almost a fruitless endeavor right now. The question, the BIG question that many people are asking; how long will it take for the gulf to recover? That is a question no one can answer. It is a question no one is willing to even try to answer.

Comments 12 comments

KFlippin profile image

KFlippin 6 years ago from Amazon

Hi Writer David! It hit the news tonight, that others are being warned off, kept off, some of our beaches, threatened with fines, etc... This is not BP, they don't have the authority to keep Americans off of American beaches, out of American air space above the spill -- that would be the federal government, that would be this Administration, and that is not going to fly, look forward to hearing your personal story.


Writer David profile image

Writer David 6 years ago from Mobile, AL Author

K, I won't be able to do the hub tonight. I will either tomorrow or another day. It was a combination of local and federal that ordered me off a beach I have been going to since I was eight years old. I promise I will share for all about the incident as "BP Oil Spill: Gulf Coast Update #2." Thanks for asking.


KFlippin profile image

KFlippin 6 years ago from Amazon

I'm checking for your hub on being told to leave. I keep wondering who told you to leave? Local police, national guard? And why do they want regular folks to stay off the beaches where presumably the oil rolling on shore is some of the worst outside of LA? Worried about health impact? Or what?


Writer David profile image

Writer David 6 years ago from Mobile, AL Author

Kflippin, unfortunately, the water and beaches look far worse than that one pic of a wave. Something else that you hit on...why are they stopping people from going to the beach. I was told to leave today or go to jail. I am going to write a hub on it today.


KFlippin profile image

KFlippin 6 years ago from Amazon

The photo you have with this hub looks like something an artist created from their imagination to reflect some putrid and distorting emotion -- instead it is a real photo that does the same. What reason are they giving you for stopping you from going to the beach?

There just is no excuse, no rationale, none - for not having every conceivable skimmer hard at work as soon as they could traverse the seas and get there. It should be considered an international crime so far as I'm concerned.


Writer David profile image

Writer David 6 years ago from Mobile, AL Author

Sheri, it is more sickening than I can convey into mere words. You have to see it to believe it. One thing that really bothers me, they are starting to stop people from going to the beach to see just how bad things really are now. This is all about protecting one man...and we know who that is, don't we?


SheriSapp profile image

SheriSapp 6 years ago from West Virginia

David,

As someone living on the front lines of this disaster, I look forward to your updates. Sad and sickening isn't it? Thanks for keeping the info coming!


Writer David profile image

Writer David 6 years ago from Mobile, AL Author

Mennetonka, thank you. It is a sad situation for everyone.


Minnetonka Twin profile image

Minnetonka Twin 6 years ago from Minnesota

Excellent hub. This is a very sad situation indeed.


Writer David profile image

Writer David 6 years ago from Mobile, AL Author

vravj, a lot of people were not aware that Obama had not accepted help from foreign countries. Yesterday, at day 70, Obama FINALLY accepted help. He has got to explain why he waited over TWO MONTHS to accept help for this disaster.

Sheila, I appreciate the thoughts. We fought through Katrina and recovered. We thought nothing could be worse than that. We were wrong.


sheila b. profile image

sheila b. 6 years ago

This is so, so sad. My first thoughts are always for the people, and how their lives are changed. I hope for all of you this will end soon.


vrajavala profile image

vrajavala 6 years ago from Port St. Lucie

So many conspiracy theories out there, and a lot of them are justified, because of the level of incompetence. If Obama didn't know about waiving the Jones Act, surely one the Coast Guard Admirals might have suggested it to him. Also, just because Costener's machine doesn't return the ocean water 100% pure is no reason not to pick up the oil. The fact is Obama is Soros' puppet and Petrobas in Brazil stands to profit from this. Soros holds a lot of stock there so that's why nothing is happening.

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