Welcome To Ground Zero Of The Oil Leak Crisis: Grand Isle, Louisiana

grand isle

Grand Isle, LA closed its beach today as heavy oil accumulates on the sand.

The barrier island town is getting pummelled by oil worse than anywhere in the country. Unfortunately, Grand Isle is entirely dependent on business from tourism and fishing.

“Would you believe I made all week long — $36.93,” local merchant Frank Besson complained. Besson’s shop, Nez Coupe Souvenir & Tackle, is normally packed this time of year, with trout season starting and school getting out. Now “you could throw a ball down the street on the main drag and not hit anybody.”

Only the restaurants are making money, Besson said, as they feed the dozens of private contractors in town to clean up the oil spill.

Besson, a former oil rig supervisor, went down to the beach yesterday and poked at the crude with a stick. He expects the beach will stay closed all summer. If so, it will be a painful summer.

“We’re going to stay open and try to do what we can. Still owe a lot of money, so we’ll see if we can sell some trinkets.”

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