NEW ORLEANS — A subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell has agreed to pay $3.8 million to the U.S. government to settle a lawsuit over a 2016 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
The May 11, 2016, spill of nearly 2,000 barrels (317,975 liters) occurred about 97 miles (156 kilometers) off the Louisiana coast.
The New Orleans Advocate, citing court documents, reports that an investigation pointed to a leak in a piping system that is used to transport oil from a production well on the sea floor.
The settlement isn't final. It must first be published in the Federal Register and have a 30-day public comment period before it can get final approval from a federal judge.
The spill was discovered after a helicopter spotted a 13-mile (21-kilometer) sheen about 90 miles (145 kilometers) south of Timbalier Island, according to news reports at the time.
Oil got as close as 75 miles (121 kilometers) to shore before a five-day cleanup ended after high winds caused much of the oil to be mixed into the water column. Shell reported that 1,926 barrels, or 80,892 gallons (306,200 liters), of oil leaked.
Under the terms of the settlement, Shell Offshore admits no liability but will pay a little more than $3.8 million to the United States. Another $37,720 will be paid for damages incurred by Louisiana.