Mont. crews finish pulling oil from Exxon pipeline

By the Associated Press | July 17, 2011 | 6:59 PM EDT

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — An official with the Environmental Protection Agency says workers have successfully removed about 100 barrels of oil from a broken Exxon Mobil pipeline in the Yellowstone River in south-central Montana.

Steve Merritt says workers on Sunday pumped out the south side of the severed pipe. A similar procedure removed oil from the north side of the pipe on Saturday.

Merritt says EPA officials believe the pipe no longer poses a threat to releasing any more oil.

The pipe failed July 1, spewing an estimated 1,000 barrels of crude into the flooding river.

Merritt says the break in the 12-inch wide pipe appears to have happened about 600 feet from a valve on the south side of the river, and about 1,000 feet from a valve on the north side.