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Oil Spill Removal Organization working to remove tar mat near Ft. Pickens

The United States Coast Guard's Oil Spill Response Organization is working to remove a tar mat in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Ft. Pickens.

Gulf Islands National Seashore Superintendent Dan Brown says the Florida Department of Environmental Protection reported the tar mat Friday morning. Its estimated size is 20 feet by 4 feet. It is located about 10 feet off the coast, past the swash.

ORSO began removing it around 12:30pm. The crew was able to remove about 450 pounds of the tar mat before suspending work because of a thunderstorm in the area.