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Amplify Blames Ship Owners for California Oil Spill in Suit

  • Energy company charged in December with negligence over spill
  • Ships anchored near pipeline during storm, Amplify says
Environmental response crews cleaning up after an oil spill in the Pacific Ocean in Huntington Beach in October 2021. 
Environmental response crews cleaning up after an oil spill in the Pacific Ocean in Huntington Beach in October 2021. Photographer: Patrick T. Fallon/AFP/Getty Images

A Houston company facing criminal charges over a Southern California oil spill sued the owners of two container ships that it says dragged their anchors over an undersea pipeline nine months before it ruptured.

Amplify Energy Corp. said the spill would never have happened if weren’t for the negligence of the ships and the failure of a California maritime agency to report the “anchor-dragging” incidents.