By Tricia Bell, Multimedia Video Journalist - bio | email
St. Marys, Ohio -
What seemed to be a small oil spill on Friday has grown into a much more difficult to contain crude oil release into waterways in Auglaize County.
Auglaize County Emergency Management officials began investigating reports of strong smells in St. Marys last week. Officials determined the smell came from a crude oil spill just off of State Route 29 near Plattner Road. A Texas company runs an oil field on the site. When crews began cleaning the ground near tanks on Friday, they discovered the oil had also gotten into Carter Creek which runs nearby.
"It got into the field tiles. How it got into the field tiles around the tanks, that's the question we're trying to figure out. Those should have been capped off and isolated, but the field tile is old clay tile. We're still trying to figure out do we still have a released going on-- and exactly what's going on there?" said Troy Anderson, EMA Director, Auglaize County.
The creek drains into the St. Marys river. Allied Environmental in Lima was brought in to help with the cleanup efforts and to prevent environmental damage. There are three wells on the site. Anderson says he is still investigating the leak, but the oil company will likely have to pay for the cleanup efforts.