NEW INFO: Oil sheen on Seattle's Elliot Bay - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

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NEW INFO: Oil sheen on Seattle's Elliot Bay

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SEATTLE - A Coast Guard spokesman says a sheen in Seattle's Elliott Bay is not a threat to the environment. Petty Officer Jeff Pollinger says it's less than a quarter square mile in size. Investigators are still trying to find the source.

Coast Guard Petty Officer Jeff Pollinger says it was reported at 7:27 this morning by a tug boat near Pier 70. He says it also was reported by four planes that flew over the bay on a landing approach to Boeing Field.

The Coast Guard sent a 41-foot boat to try to identify what is causing the sheen. Pollinger says it's not necessarily oil and could also be caused by algae. State Ecology Department spokesman Larry Altose says the sheen apparently spreads from Pier 70 to Smith Cove. That's more than a mile.

The department is chartering a helicopter for an inspection. Altose says a sheen usually indicates gasoline or diesel -- fuels too light to be recovered.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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