100 gallons of oil spilled into river near Mt. Airy

Published 12:14 am Wednesday, February 14, 2018

MT. AIRY — A 100-gallon oil spill that originated from Pin Oak Terminals in Mt. Airy Sunday had minimal impact on St. John the Baptist Parish, officials say.

As of Monday afternoon, ES&H Industrial Group was contracted by responsible party Pin Oak Terminals to clean the spill, which was primarily contained to the docking area.

Assistant Director of Public Safety Travis Perrilloux said a 100-gallon spill in the Mississippi River is the equivalent of “putting an eyedropper of bleach into a swimming pool.”

There are no issues concerning public water intake from the river at this time, Perrilloux said, though conditions were still being monitored early this week.

The scope of the spill was originally feared to be as much as 4,200 gallons, the amount of #6 oil product that was being transported to a barge via a faulty pipe.

U.S. Coast Guard incident management teams responded to the spill alongside St. John Parish emergency personnel and discovered only 100 gallons had leaked from the pipe, which has since been repaired and secured.

U.S. Coast Guard 8th District Petty Officer Laura Ratliff said the team was alerted to the spill around 12:30 a.m. Sunday, and the investigation concluded prior to 4:40 p.m.

There is no known environmental damage to St. John the Baptist Parish at this time, according to Ratliff.

Perrilloux said contained leaks are taken just as seriously as spills that stretch for miles down the River.

“No matter how small or large a spill in St. John Parish, we treat it with the same responsibility and response,” Perrilloux said.

Representatives from Pin Oak Terminals were not immediately available for comment as of publication time.