Exxon wins safety award amid oil spill investigations

The award comes in the middle of an oil spill investigation against Exxon Mobile, which has sparked a national debate about the safety of running crude oil lines between Canada and the United States.

As crews work tirelessly to clean up the 84,000 gallons of crude oil spilled in Mayflower, Ark., last week by oil company Exxon Mobil, a nonprofit awarded it with an award for safety.

The National Safety Council presented Exxon Mobil with the Green Cross for Safety medal at its annual fundraising dinner in Houston on April 2, honoring it for "its leadership and comprehensive commitment to safety excellence."

Related: US government issues corrective order for Exxon

"It is an honor to receive this medal on behalf of the men and women of Exxon Mobil," Exxon Mobil Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Rex W. Tillerson said in a statement on Wednesday. "We hold this award in high esteem because it recognizes the deep commitment of our company and our people to a culture of safety."

NSC cited Exxon for what they described as a history of "achievements in workplace safety, community service, environmental stewardship and responsible citizenship."

"It is evident that Exxon Mobil is committed to excellence in safety, security, health and environmental performance," said NSC president and CEO Janet Froetscher. "This organization is a wonderful example of the role corporations can play in preventing injuries and saving lives."

Neither NSC nor Exxon made any comments regarding the spill while issuing a statement on the award.

Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel has asked Exxon Mobil to produce documents related to the Mayflower spill by April 10, issuing a subpoena last week to obtain the company's inspection reports and other information pertinent to the 848-mile Pegasus pipeline that burst last week.

The spill forced people to evacuate from their homes and the smell of oil lingered far beyond the impacted areas.

The spill has sparked a national debate about whether it is safe to carry large volumes of crude oil through a pipeline from Canada to the United States.

Video footage provided to Rt.com by a Mayflower resident shows "muddied tarps strewn across the street" where the spill occurred, while workers in hard hats clean and restore the area.

Exxon spokeswoman Kim Jordan has said that the company will "cooperate fully" with any investigation.

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