Trinidad company fires 6 in wake of oil spills

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Associated Press

Posted on February 9, 2014 at 10:32 AM

Updated Sunday, Feb 9 at 10:33 AM

PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad (AP) — Trinidad & Tobago's state-owned petroleum company has fired six employees in the wake of a string of oil spills late last year.

Petrotrin President Khalid Hassanali says the six workers had "high degrees of culpability" into spills in Trinidad' southwest region spanning a week in December. They were fired Saturday. It wasn't immediately clear if they will be charged with any criminal offenses.

Hassanali says six other workers were found to have a "lesser degree of culpability" and were reinstated.

Last month, the government fined Petrotrin $3 million for violating environmental and reporting standards.

Spills of at least 7,500 barrels of oil impacted several communities, with some residents complaining of health problems. Fishermen also said the spilled fuel damaged their equipment and killed fish in waters between Trinidad and Venezuela.

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