Zhu and Strunin (Appl. Math. Model., 2001) presented a simple mathematical model for the confinement of oil spills, through the use of floating barriers such as booms, in an open ocean. In that paper, solutions with an indirect approach to solve the nonlinear integral equation system were discussed. In this paper, we shall present some recent results of the model obtained with a direct approach. This direct solution procedure enables us to quantitatively discuss the relationship among three important physical parameters, the Froude number, F, the barrier submergence depth, l, and the amount of oil trapped by the barrier, q. Although a further upgrading of our model to somehow incorporate the shear stress on the oil–water interface appears to be necessary, the complexity involved in such upgrading warrants the current model as an initial step in our modelling exercises of this complicated flow phenomenon.