Ark. residents evacuated after oil spill

March 31, 2013 at 4:04 PM

MAYFLOWER, Ark., March 31 (UPI) -- Residents near a ruptured Exxon oil pipeline in Arkansas were allowed back home briefly to gather clothes and other needed items, officials said.

The occupants of about 40 homes -- ordered to evacuate Friday after the pipeline in Mayflower, Ark., burst -- returned to gather items and said they've been offered conflicting reports on when they'll be able to return to their homes.

Witnesses told KTHV-TV, Little Rock, oil flowed down their street like a river after the underground pipeline -- which many residents said they never knew was beneath their homes -- burst, the crude bubbling to the surface.

Exxon Mobil Pipeline Co. President Gary Pruessing said the company will pay compensation for those whose property is damaged.

"If you have been harm by this spill then we're going to look at how to make that right," he said.

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