COLERAIN TOWNSHIP, OH (FOX19) - An around-the-clock cleanup continues after more than 20,000 gallons of crude oil spilled into the Oak Glen Nature Preserve in Colerain Township.
Officials with the Colerain Fire Department say that a total of 35,000 gallons of a combined oil and water mixture have been collected from the preserve, with 17,000 gallons of pure oil pulled from the mixture. The oil spill initially happened on March 17.
On Monday, officials announced that at least 11 animals are dead as a result to the contamination and 26 others are being cleaned and treated.
Found dead in the nature preserve include eight crayfish, two green frogs and a two-lined salamander. Twenty-six other animals are being cleaned and cared for before being released.
The Environmental Protection Agency has said the oil leaked from an underground pipeline traveling nearly a mile through a creek before pooling into a pond.
Philadelphia-based Sunoco Logistics, which according to the Associated Press, largely owns the pipeline, is funding the recovery operations. The company states they have repaired the leak and restarted oil flow on Sunday evening.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the oil is contained in all four zones, with 17,000 gallons already collected. Officials don't know what caused the pipeline to break. It's a 20-inch line several feet underground.
Crews hope to have the emergency phase of the cleanup finished in about a week. The next phase involves cleaning residual oil, which may take months.
The Hamilton County Health Department is also doing air quality tests. They say so far, levels are normal but they are encouraging any nearby residents who feel nauseated or light headed due to the strong odor to contact their hotline. That number is 513-946-7808.