An estimated 10,000 gallons of crude oil leaked from a pipeline and was discovered overnight in Colerain Township in Ohio, which is located in one of the Hamilton County park system's four conservation areas.
The spill reportedly appears to have affected a mile of intermittent stream, pooling in a wetland in the Oak Glen Nature Preserve.
Hazmat crews and the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency were called to the scene.
A local Fox News affiliate, Channel 19 News reports:
Fire officials said their primary concern is not the human impact, but the environmental impact.The Mid-Valley Pipeline Co. pipeline is largely owned by Sunoco Logistics. According to the company's website, its pipelines in the midwest consist of approximately 1,000 miles of a crude oil pipeline that originates in Longview, Texas and passes through Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee, Kentucky and Ohio.
EPA officials, Hamilton County park rangers and representatives with pipeline company were on scene assessing the extent of the leak and possible environmental impact.
"This could be a very long, drawn-out process to mitigate it," Conn said. "They have to clean the rocks, get everything cleaned out and pump the oil out. We're obviously very worried about the water supply and the water and making sure it didn't get into that, that it didn't get into the river. If it did, we're talking about a whole other issue."
During a briefing Tuesday morning, EPA spokeswoman Heather Lauer confirmed that one mile of intermittent stream was affected by the spill, which ends in one acre of wetland.
It did not appear that the Great Miami River had been impacted.
The Cincinnati Enquirer reports:
This is at least the third time in the last six years that oil has leaked from the pipeline in Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky.Ron and Sharon Worsley live on a 55-acre cattle and horse farm next to the nature preserve, and spoke to the media today:
In February 2009, cold temperatures caused a leak of eight barrels (or 248 gallons) of crude oil in Burlington. The spill caused $33,900 in property damage.
A much larger spill occurred in Burlington in October 2008, after construction crews struck the line, sending 189,000 gallons of crude oil gushing. Eighty homes in the area were evacuated. Some of the oil ended up in the sanitary sewer system and in Gunpowder Creek. After that spill, Sunoco Logistics officials said the line carried about 238,000 barrels per day to refineries in Ohio.
In January 2005, the same pipeline ruptured near Carrollton, sending 260,000 gallons of oil into the Kentucky River. The slick fouled a large section of the Kentucky River, killed some marine life and forced Louisville officials to take precautions with drinking water from the Ohio.
Sharon said she has smelled the oil since the end of last week, but that she thought it was from her husband pouring diesel into his tractor. She said the smell hasn't impacted her daily activities.
"The pipeline has been here as long as we've been here -- 47 years," she said.
Ron said he thought the smell seemed stronger this morning.
"When I am around the stuff I am less sensitive to it," he said. "I have diesel around here."
The couple said they don't have any concerns about the pipeline leak.
"I wouldn't want to be swimming in it," Ron said, "but these things happen."