The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries announced today it will be closing recreational and commercial fishing in further areas of state waters as a precautionary response to the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
This action expands the previously announced emergency commercial and recreational fishing closure to include an area of the state's territorial sea west of the Mississippi River to Point au Fer and the beaches that border any of the closed areas.
LDWF Secretary Robert Barham announced the closure of both recreational and commercial fishing in the state territorial seas, and the bordering beaches, extending from the eastern shore of South Pass of the Mississippi River westward to the eastern portion of Atchafalaya Bay at Point au Fer at 91 degrees 20 minutes 44 seconds west longitude. This closure will take place at 6 pm, tonight, May 9, 2010.
The Deepwater Horizon drilling rig accident has resulted in a significant release of oil into the offshore waters of Louisiana and the area of impact is expanding. Oil has the potential to impact fish and other aquatic life in portions of Louisiana's coastal waters.
The Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is working closely with the Department of Environmental Quality, the Department of Health and Hospitals and the Governor's Office for Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness as the situation unfolds. Updates on any further closures or changes in the status of areas closed will be posted at emergency.louisiana.gov.
For more information related to the oil spill, visit http://www.emergency.louisiana.gov  Connect with us on www.facebook.com/GOHSEP  and on Twitter @GOHSEP. View photos in from the state's response efforts at http://www.flickr.com/photos/lagohsep