Published Date Written by Staff ReportThe Maine Department of Environmental Protection is looking into an incident in Portland where more than 150 gallons of fuel were dumped into some catch basins.
The Portland Police Department and the Maine DEP were able to quickly determine that the fuel had been dumped out of three barrels that were later traced to Schnitzer Steel, according to a city press release. The DEP will continuing investigating the incident and determine if its necessary to levy any fines to cover the fuel cost against the person who sold the tanks to the scrap company.
Representatives from the city, state and a local environmental clean-up group helped remove the oil from the catch basins.
On Tuesday, a city employee noticed that an illegal oil dump had occurred near the intersection of Falmouth and St. John streets, according to a press release. The basins empty directly into the city's combined sewer system.
"Without the quick action and thinking of several city employees, this toxic pollution could have caused serious risk to the neighborhood, the city's sewer system and the environment," said Director of Public Services Michael Bobinsky, in a press release. "Whether a catch basin drains to the bay or into the city's sewer treatment facility, illegal dumping is a serious issue with long lasting environmental consequences."
"While this week's example is extreme, we deal daily with waste improperly tossed down a catch basin. Whether it's a cigarette butt, dog waste, lawn clips or motor oil, they need to be disposed of properly," he added.