400 Tons of Fuel Oil Leak Into France's Loire River After Pipe Breaks

About 3,000 barrels of fuel oil leaked in and along the Loire River after a pipe ruptured while a tanker was being loaded at a Total refinery, the company said Monday.

Rescue teams used floating dams and Total mobilized a 200-person cleanup team to cope with the 400-ton spill at the Donges refinery in western France that began late Sunday, the company said in a statement.

Local officials said chunks of solidified oil were spotted on Atlantic Ocean estuary beaches, and fuel was seen floating along 12 miles of river Monday evening.

Total spokesman Burkhard Reuss said the cause of the rupture was not immediately clear. The company was trying to determine how long it took for the leakage of oil to be stopped, he said.

The Donges refinery produces about 230,000 barrels per day, he said.