On Oct. 3, 2004, a crude oil spill was discovered in a rural area near Albany, KY (NRC Report #737219). Upon arriving at a storage tank battery, the fire department discovered an uncontrolled discharge of crude oil from the base of a 100 barrel (4,200 gallon) above-ground tank. Less than 1,000 gallons of oil had spilled into a containment area before the leak was secured. The dike wall was breached allowing a small quantity of spilled oil to migrate downgradient about 200 feet before it was stopped. The spill was initially reported to threaten a tributary to Big Willis Creek, which connects direcly to the Cumberland River, located about 5 miles from this oil production facility.
EPA OSC Art Smith was dispatched to further investigate the incident on Oct. 4. Black Gold Drilling, the operator of the oil production facility was in the process of removing spilled oil and excavating oil-contaminated soil. No surface water was observed to have been impacted.
OSC Smith performed a Spill Prevention Control and Countermeasures (SPCC) inspection to document the lack of adequate secondary containment at this facility. The Kentucky Department for Environmental Protection (KYDEP) is the lead agency for directing any further cleanup of the incident.