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Red Butte Creek Oil Spill: Updates
Red Butte Creek Oil Spill: One Year Later
Updated: June 8, 2011
June 12, 2011 marks one year since the first Red Butte Creek Oil Spill. Phase 1 of the creek clean up was completed last summer and fall with crews working down the creek using washing/flushing equipment and various oil absorbing booms. Liberty Lake was cleaned up over the winter, pond sediment was fully removed and structures that were oil contaminated were either cleaned or replaced.
There is still residual oil in Red Butte Creek that can show up in backwater areas or in sediment and vegetation along the creek bank. Residents do report oil odors at times and still see evidence of oil residuals in the creek. DEQ has been committed to responding to all of these reports.
High runoff this spring has produced scouring flows in Red Butte Creek that should prove very beneficial in removing residual oil from the creek. Following runoff, DEQ will undertake further monitoring in Phase 2 of the cleanup for water quality, creek sediment, creek bank soil, and aquatic organisms to determine how the creek responds and what further clean up measures are needed.