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Waste Site Cleanup & Reuse in New England

Fitchburg Savings Bank Oil Spill

Fitchburg Savings Bank Oil Spill

During the weekend of November 26, 2005, a report of a light oil sheen viewed in the Nashua River was taken by the Mass. Department of Environmental Protection from the Fitchburg Fire Department. The fire department determined that oil release may have been coming from a fiberglass tank containing #2 fuel oil owned by the Fitchburg Savings Bank. 

The following Monday, EPA received an oil release notification report from the National Response Center filed by a “licensed site professional” retained by Fitchburg Savings Bank. The same day, EPA followed up the report at the DEP’s regional office. Some 7,000 gallons of heating oil were released from a 10,000 gallon underground storage tank about 250 feet from the Nashua River. A catch basin about 50 feet from the tank is connected to an underground drainage culvert that drains stormwater runoff from the surrounding area into the Nashua River. Despite the setup of absorbent booms at the catch basin and the outlet of discharge culvert, DEP was concerned that the immediate response action was not adequate. EPA was sent to the scene and met with a bank representative and the contracted professional. Fitchburg Savings Bank hired a cleanup contractor and an excavation contractor, which did test pit excavations to locate and define the impacted area.

A vacuum truck was mobilized to remove the remaining 2000 gallons of oil from the UST.  An absorbent boom was installed at the outlet of the 72-inch discharge culvert.  Absorbent pads were installed in the catch basin.  Groundwater was encountered and oil was observed at an excavated depth of 18 to 20 feet in 5 feet by 15 feet area near the location of UST.  OSC Tsang suggested that the LSP conduct an inspection of the river bank on the following morning in order to be sure that it is not impacted by the spill. OSC Tsang suggested the FFD contact the Leominster Fire Department (LFD) and inform LFD of the oil spill in the event that oil sheen would be observed in the Nashua River in Leominster.  The Massachusetts DEP verbally approved an immediate response action (IRA) plan to conduct test pit excavation, install intercepting trench and maintain absorbent booms/pads at the catch basin and discharge outlet as necessary.  There is a planned excavation and removal of the oil impacted soil, as well as a groundwater pumping to recover free oil product. Finally, the UST will be removed, and the remaining remediation will be supervised by DEP.

Location: Fitchburg, MA
EPA Mobilization Date*: 11/28/2005
EPA Demobilization Date*: 11/28/2005
Contact: Claudia Deane (deane.claudia@epa.gov)

*The information contained on this website is merely informational; any dates found on the website cannot be relied upon to create any rights, substantive or procedural, enforceable by any party in litigation with the United States. EPA reserves the right to change such dates at any time without public notice.

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