Overview: On June 21st, 2022, Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (ODEQ)
contacted EPA about a report that a local resident found two large flasks of
elemental mercury somewhere on the Black Butte Mine National Priorities List
(NPL) Site near Cottage Grove, Oregon. The Black Butte Mine is a former
Mercury Mine that EPA added to the NPL in 2010. The report to ODEQ indicated
some of the mercury was released from one of the flasks and spilled on the
resident’s clothes. The resident then returned home where a parent
segregated his clothing and placed it outside the residence.
State, Local and other Federal
Agency Actions: ODEQ coordinated with
the resident who reported the mercury incident and then contacted the EPA
Remedial Project Manager for the Black Butte Mine site for assistance.
The incident was then referred to the EPA R10 Phone Duty Officer.
EPA Actions: This incident is in EPA jurisdiction. A Region
10 OSC will deploy with START resources to assess the residence for possible
mercury contamination. The OSC will also investigate the location of the
mercury flasks and secure them for further action. EPA’s R10 Emergency
Response program will continue to coordinate with the Black Butte Mine RPM and