ALASKA - Diesel Fuel Spill Threatens Healy Lake Wells : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

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Article last updated: Tuesday, April 18, 2000 5:42 AM MST Title: Diesel Fuel Spill Threatens Healy Lake Wells


Water wells will be tested at Healy Lake today following a diesel fuel spill of an unknown amount at the lakeside village located roughly 30 miles southeast of Delta Junction.

Monday afternoon, a resident of the village of 47 saw fuel on top of the ground, running downhill from the newly constructed school through the village and toward the community drinking water well and the lake.

Dan Beck, Delta-Greely School District superintendent, said bad weather grounded airplanes so few people could reach the site. He related reports that villagers had used a backhoe and bulldozer to construct a dike to contain the fuel and that the 10,000-gallon tank that was the source for the fuel had been turned off.

"I don't know how many gallons leaked out," Beck said Monday evening. "At this point it seems to be under control, and I'll know more tomorrow."

A school maintenance person was on-site, and Department of Environmental Conservation officials were taken to the site in a U.S. Army helicopter Monday afternoon.

Beck said Monday night that officials still were in the "discovery stage," but said environmental technicians would be sampling wells in the village and trying to determine the extent of the spill Tuesday.

"Any time there is an oil spill we need to take it real seriously and we're trying to respond quickly and efficiently as possible," he said.

The fuel apparently came from a line that connects the 10,000-gallon tank to the village's new school. The fuel line is about four feet underground and is a double-walled pipe. Construction of the school, on a hill overlooking the village, was completed in November, Beck said.

The tank was last filled in March, according to a DEC situation report.

The community well supplies water to a "washeteria" and community center. There are also several private wells in the area, Beck said.


-- (, April 18, 2000

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