Maggie Creek Sulfuric Acid Spill

Site Contact:
Jeremy Johnstone


Site Location:
Carlin, NV 89822
NRC#: 1245794

On May 15 a tanker truck carrying approximately 5,300 gallons of sulfuric acid en route to the Goldstrike Mine rolled over into Maggie Creek on Nevada Highway 766, approximately 7.5 miles north of the city of Carlin. Maggie Creek flows into Humboldt River. EPA on-scene coordinators arrived on-scene to oversee the response. Downstream users had been notified of the release by the Elko County Emergency Response Coordinator.

While the trucking company transporting the sulfuric acid is the responsible party, environmental response teams from nearby Newmont Goldcorp and Barrick Gold Corp. mines led response efforts on the ground. The night of 5/15 the truck’s larger tanker was pulled out of the creek and it was determined that approximately 3,000 gallons of sulfuric acid had released to Maggie Creek. A smaller tank trailer containing approximately 2,300 gallons was removed intact from the creek the morning of 5/16 without the loss of any acid and the contents were transferred to another trailer. In addition, EPA oversaw Newmont and Barrick environmental response teams conducting monitoring and sampling of Maggie Creek.

No downstream impacts were observed, save for for one dead fingerling trout. EPA's on-scene coordinators have demobilized from the incident.