Spills photo identifier

Spills Program

When Spills Happen

The Department of Ecology is designated as Washington’s lead agency to oversee prevention, abatement, response, containment, and cleanup efforts with regard to an oil or hazardous substance spill to waters of the state.  The State On Scene Coordinator acts as the principal state spokesperson in the incident command as an advocate for state and local interests.

West Coast Mutual Aid In the Event of Major Spills
In an effort to expedite and enhance the response to major West Coast spills, the Pacific States/British Columbia Oil Spill Task Force members pre-approved and signed the 1993 mutual aid agreement (revised in 2007) which will be activated by the unified command if additional resources are needed.

Clean-up Cost, Damage Assessments and Other Penalties
Those responsible for oil spills may be asked to reimburse the state for cleanup costs.  Additionally, spillers may also be asked to pay for damages to any state beaches, wildlife or other natural resources.  Spills may also result in penalties and other enforcement actions.

Spill Response Information

Primary Response Contractors

Tools to manage a response

Incident Command System