WEST BATH, Maine — The Maine Department of Environmental Protection on Friday continued to oversee the cleanup of 200-225 gallons of home heating oil that spilled Wednesday on Higgins Road.
West Bath firefighters were called Wednesday afternoon to 44 Higgins Road, where homeowners reported the oil spill.
Ann Hemenway of the DEP’s Bureau of Remediation and Waste Management, who is overseeing the cleanup effort, responded to the site at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday.
She said Friday that when she arrived, firefighters had positioned the tank so it was no longer leaking, and had placed absorbent pads on the ground, “but the oil had sunk into the ground pretty quickly.”
Hemenway said the wooden “cradle” that had held the home heating oil “just gave way,” spilling the oil out onto the hilly property.
“Some actually flowed down the driveway, and some soaked into the ground onto the bedrock,” she said. Although a stream sits farther down the hill, Hemenway said no oil escaped into the stream — or the adjacent lily pond — because contractors dug a trench in the driveway to collect it.
Workers for Boom Technology of Gorham, contracted by the DEP, spent Thursday and Friday morning excavating contaminated soil and taking it to a disposal facility in Scarborough, but that facility is closed on the weekend, Hemenway said, so the crew was hurrying to clean up the remainder of the spill by the end of the day Friday.
Hemenway estimated the cleanup would cost approximately $10,000. The homeowners — whose name was not available — will pay a deductible, but the remainder will be covered by a state fund to clean up such home heating oil spills, she said.