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Ticonderoga oil spill could prove costly

Town awaiting DEC report, possible penalties

After a second oil spill in the last three years, the town of Ticonderoga is waiting to hear about possible penalties from the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

After a second oil spill in the last three years, the town of Ticonderoga is waiting to hear about possible penalties from the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

— After a second oil spill in the last three years, the town of Ticonderoga is waiting to hear about possible penalties from the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

“We haven’t received a report from the DEC yet,” Ti Supervisor Deb Malaney said. “We could be fined up to $37,000 a day for not reporting it. The DEC could also require us to install new safety measures to prevent future spills.”

A gasoline spill in 2010 cost Ticonderoga $275,000 in fines, redmediation of the affected area and corrective actions.

This past February about 20 gallons of heating oil spilled at the town highway garage, according to Malaney. It was quickly cleaned up by highway department workers, Malaney said.

The Ti highway garage has a 1,000-gallon tank outside with another 250-gallon tank inside. While oil was being transferred to the small tank a valve was left unattended and heating oil spilled. The spill was the result of human error, Malaney said.

“We had a small spill from a heating oil tank onto the concrete floor of the shop,” said Highway Department Superintendent Mike Parent. “We cleaned up the spill with the spill kits in the shop and informed the DEC.”

DEC was informed, Malaney said, but not for several days.

“You’re required to report any spill of five gallons or more,” Malaney said. “It was a small spill and our highway workers were unaware they had to report it.”

An anonymous person reported the spill to the DEC and made Ticonderoga officials aware of their obligation to make full disclosure. At that time, several days after the spill, Ticonderoga filed a formal report with the DEC.

The DEC, which doesn’t comment on on-going investigations, came to the Ti highway garage and conducted an examination of the incident. DEC has not yet informed Ticonderoga officials of its findings.

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