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Oil Spill At Park Threatens Great Miami River

Posted On March 19, 2014

By Mike Perleberg

An EPA official assesses an oil-filled stream at Oak Glen Nature Preserve in Hamilton County, Ohio. U.S. EPA OSC

An EPA official assesses an oil-filled stream at Oak Glen Nature Preserve in Hamilton County, Ohio.
U.S. EPA OSC

(Hamilton County, Oh.) – Investigators will begin looking for the cause of an oil spill in a Hamilton County park Wednesday, while a cleanup plan is put in place.

The pipeline leak was discovered Monday night at Oak Glen Nature Preserve off East Miami River Road in Colerain Township. Officials say 10,000 gallons – or about 240 barrels – of crude oil spilled Monday night from a broken pipeline that runs through the wetland park.

According to a news release from Colerain Township Fire Department, “CTFD officers, along with Great Parks Rangers conducted a thorough investigation of the area and after several hours of walking the wooded areas determined the problem to be coming from break/rupture of a regional crude oil pipeline that traverses the country from Texas to Michigan. The Ohio EPA was notified early in the investigation and a representative arrived on scene prior to midnight.”

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Operations to limit the flow of oil out of a pond at the park began Tuesday.
U.S. EPA OSC

The Ohio EPA says the cleanup will likely take more than a week. Steps were being taken to prevent the crude from reaching the Great Miami River, which is located within 500 feet of a park pond containing the oil.

The 20-inch pipeline operated by Texas-based Mid Valley Pipeline Corporation runs from Hebron, Kentucky to Lima, Ohio. Colerain Township fire officials said Wednesday it remains unclear what caused the pipe to rupture.

The U.S. EPA, Great Parks of Hamilton County, and Mid-Valley Pipeline are assisting the Ohio EPA with the investigation and handling of the oil spill. More than 50 personnel from those and other agencies have been on site.