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I wish that one of the Daily Pilot or LA Times reporters would do some research on this. The section of West Newport where these odors occurred are literally next door to a 70 year old active oil field. Until 1998 the land under the 600+ homes in the area were only available under a 99 year lease from the city, based on the fact that the entire Newport Shores development was the result of a 1950's pollution settlement (with the ground under these homes considered to be too contaminated to sold to anyone. The construction of an "Olympic" size swimming pool and recreation center were also included in the settlement. At least once a month the oil field releases substances into the surrounding canal that literally no one knows exactly what they are or what they contain. The City seems to turn a blind eye to the oil field activities, I assume, based on the fact that its serves as a significant tax base and is also in the process of being converted into a major condominium, hotel and shopping center development. The idea that this horrendous odor came from an offshore oil rig over 9 miles away is utterly ridiculous. Considering dissipation, if what the fire chief said is true, the oil rig workers would have been effected and probably dead
Hydrogen Sulphide / Sulfide ha s a very characteristic smell, like rotten eggs. But it does affect the olfactory sense and after a while a person can no longer smell it...... One reason it's so dangerous is because if people are exposed to it and don't know about its effects on their sense of smell, they can wrongly believe the gas has gone away, when the opposite may be true.
Newport police issued a statement Thursday afternoon saying the odor did not pose a public safety threat. The smell reportedly had dissipated by 6:30 p.m.