Investigators think crude oil release was vandalism
Investigators believe the spill of 1,680 gallons of crude oil from a tank at an “old-style” gas and oil well at 655 Mahan Denman Road in Bristol Township was an act of vandalism.
The spill, discovered around noon Wednesday, fouled about 1.5 miles of a nearby tributary of the Grand River, said Mike Settles, spokesman for the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency.
The EPA and the company ChemTron were at the site again Thursday, conducting cleanup activities.
About a third of the oil got into the stream, but so far there has been no evidence of fish killed, Settles said.
The other two thirds of the oil was contained to the soil around the tank and has been recovered by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Settles said.
Investigators found that the valve on the storage tank was open and it had previously been closed and plugged, leading to the vandalism theory, Settles said.
The tank is off of Mahan Denman between North Park Avenue Extension and Hoagland Blackstub Road.
If the person or persons responsible for the contamination are found, the EPA will seek reimbursement from them for the cleanup.
Anyone with information about this or other environmental matters is asked to call the EPA hotline at 1-800-282-9378.