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Weather delays inspectors' arrival at pipeline spill.

Daniel Martins
Digital Reporter

Monday, December 1, 2014, 10:57 AM - Alberta's snowstorm late last week delayed inspectors from the Alberta Energy Regulator from making it to the site of a remote crude oil spill in the province's north.

"Delineation and sampling are being done as well as cleanup has begun," the incident report reads on the regulator's website. "No reports of impact to wildlife. Sampling and delineation indicate the majority of the spill was contained to the lease."

The incident occurred on Thursday at a Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. pipeline, and resulted in the release of 60,000 litres of crude oil into an area of muskeg roughly 100 m by 20 m, at a site roughly 27 km north of Red Earth Creek, itself to the north of Slave Lake. 

The spill volume is about equivalent to 500 barrels, according to Carrie Rosa, a spokeswoman for the regulator.

Rosa told The Weather Network that inspectors reached the site on Sunday, after poor weather and road conditions forced them to delay their arrival.

"As soon as it was safe for them to do so, they were able to reach the site," Rosa said Monday. "It's just a safety mechanism for our staff. If ... the conditions aren't safe for them to reach the site, they get there as soon as they can."

She said cleanup was underway, but she did then have an updated report from the site. Attempts to contact Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. have not yet been successful.

The spill took place at a time when much of central and northern Alberta were under snowfall or winter storm warnings. The conditions contributed to numerous collisions and forced the closure of several highways, including part of the QEII.

ALBERTA SNOW: Watch below for a look back at this strong storm.

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