Approximately 2,000 gallons of fuel oil was released from a tractor-trailer tanker when it was struck by another automobile. The oil was released to the roadway when an automobile struck the bottom loading valves releasing the oil. The spilled oil migrated to catch basins that discharged to a swamp area, stream and a chain of ponds. The ponds and surrounding wetlands is a local wildlife sanctuary. REI and vendors mobilized personnel and equipment to complete containment and remedial activities.
Multiple vacuum trucks were necessary to collect oil from the roadway, swamp area and the ponds. Absorbent and containment boom were installed to prevent further migration. Adjacent personal properties were impacted by the release including neighboring gravel driveways and yard areas.
A priority was immediately placed on removing the spilled oil from the pond and the prevention of migration to a larger pond. A fractionation tank was placed in the street and loads of oil and oil water were shuttled into the tank so that skimming operations could continue non-stop. Due to forecasted rain operations continued around the clock to prevent additional impact. After the site was stabilized, contractors excavated the driveway areas and along the roadway shoulder. A monitoring and absorbent maintenance program, in place of major excavation of the affected sediment in the wetland area, was implemented. In addition, a majority of the residences surrounding the release area utilized individual private drinking water wells. As a precaution all drinking water wells surrounding the release area were sampled.
A wetlands baseline inspection was conducted after the initial heavy rain flushing to document conditions. In keeping with similar wetland releases, the plan of action was maintenance of absorbents, changing out such just before hard winter and inspection during heavy rain events. It was established that wetlands and wild life in the area were not adversely impacted. Residual petroleum hydrocarbons were shown to be degraded by native bacteria. Given the extent of remediation activities conducted and the diminished levels of remaining fuel oil constituents, natural degradation actions sufficiently reduced the levels of impact to background over an acceptable time period. Ultimately this remediation proved acceptable and remedial activities satisfied the CT-DEP.