The cleanup in the Glen Oaks Nature Preserve continues around-the-clock at least through the weekend after investigators located a five-inch crack in a section of the coal-tar lined pipe carrying crude oil through the region.
Colerain Township Fire Chief Steve Conn said engineers identified the crack that led to an estimated 10,000-gallon spill into the protected area on a steep ravine in the park. Colerain Township firefighters first reported the incident last Monday.
“Ten thousand gallons is a lot of oil, so it looks bad,” Conn said.
As of Saturday morning, workers for Sunoco had removed more than 25,000 gallons of a mixture of crude oil and water from the site, according to Environmental Protection Agency. Once the oil and water separate, officials will be able to give a more accurate estimate of the number of gallons of crude oil spilled.
Also on Saturday, a specialty-engineered repair clamp that workers applied to the failed part of the pipe will be tested in coordination with federal authorities, according to Sunoco Logistics spokesperson Jeff Shields.
The Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration regulates all pipelines around the country.
Shields said that Sunoco has agreed to cut out that section of the 64-year-old pipe in the coming months, preserve it and send it to a metallurgical engineering lab to find out why it failed.
Shields said that as of Saturday, no schedule for re-starting the pipe has been announced.