A broken pipeline that spilled thousands of gallons of crude oil into a Colerain Township, OH, nature preserve is back up and flowing once again, officials said Monday.
Pipeline safety investigators have not yet determined the cause of the interstate pipeline to burst, but a temporary repair was ready Sunday and the pipeline began carrying oil again about 5 p.m., said Colerain Township Fire Department Capt. Steve Conn.
The clean up from the spill discovered March 17 continued Monday with 35,000 gallons of an oil-water mixture recovered from the Hamilton County-owned Oak Glen Nature Preserve, at 7584 Thompson Road.
Officials now say that 17,000 gallons of oil spilled from the line in an area about 500 feet from the Great Miami River. Initial estimates put the spill at 10,000 gallons.
Officials said there are no air hazards and atmospheric monitoring continues.
Officials collected 21 animals and all but one suffered from oil contamination. Among the animals collected have been crayfish, salamanders, frogs and turtles, but some of the animals have died. Conn said it’s not clear yet if they died as a result of exposure to oil.
Sunoco Logistics owns and Mid-Valley Pipeline Co. operates the 1,119-mile pipeline that runs from Texas to Michigan, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration.
Sunoco will conduct pressure testing at the site of the leak to determine the pipeline’s integrity at a later date.
Crews will continue flushing operations in a stream to allow oil to flow downstream and end up collected. Authorities said a pond near the spill site is showing improved conditions and work will continue to remove a residual oil sheen from the bond surface. The pond’s shoreline is also showing staining akin to a “bathtub ring” formed as a result of the oil’s presence. Authorities will use thermal heat to remove the ring, Conn said.