LA National Guard fights off oil with water

VENICE, La. (AP) - A Louisiana National Guard company from Oak Grove has set up almost a mile of big water-filled tubes as a second line of defense against the advancing oil spill.

The 1023rd Vertical Engineer Company, 528th Engineer Battalion is working about 275 miles from home. Staff Sgt. Denis Ricou says it's creating a 7.1-mile barrier across a beach in Southwest Pass at the mouth of the Mississippi River.

The system usually replaces sandbags for flood control. At Southwest Pass, it's aimed at stopping oil that gets past the boom line, so it won't get into delicate marshes.

Ricou said Friday that the 922nd Horizontal Engineer Company, 769th Engineer Battalion, has completed work to fill in a gap more than 800 feet long and about 80 feet wide which otherwise might let oil into marshes on the back side of Elmer's Island, near Grand Isle.

He says that's also a coastal reclamation project.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)