Fuel spill treatment expected to begin June 3

ABERFOYLE – Water sampling provided no evidence that a January fuel spill here will having long-term or ongoing effects to Mill Creek.

Puslinch Township has posted the most recent update from the Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks (MOECP) regarding the fuel spill that occurred in Puslinch on Jan. 13 after a tanker carrying 50,000 litres of jet fuel and a second vehicle collided on Highway 401 eastbound lanes at Highway 6 north.

The ministry conducted sediment and surface water sampling in Shade’s Mill Reservoir to evaluate any residual impacts from the fuel spill.

Sediment sampling in the beach area of Shade’s Mill Reservoir in April included the collection of sediments at varying water level marks.

Surface water sampling was conducted in early May  and included the collection of samples upstream of the reservoir, at both the north and south side of the reservoir, and downstream.

Results showed the concentration of parameters related to the fuel spill were below the method detection limit for all sediment and surface water samples collected.

The consultant completed a Shoreline Clean up Assessment Technique (SCAT) Survey along priority sections of Aberfoyle Creek, Mill Creek and Shade’s Mill Reservoir. The results of the SCAT survey indicated sheen was only noticed once the creek banks were disturbed downstream in Aberfoyle Creek and Mill Creek to the Wellington Road 35 creek crossing.

There was no fuel-related sheen observed downstream of the Wellington Road 35 creek crossing or at Shade’s Mill Reservoir.

The consultant submitted a report based on the findings of the SCAT survey to the ministry for review. Pending ministry comments, the treatment plan is scheduled to start on June 3.

The ministry noted that on April 15 the consultant submitted an ecotoxicological assessment outlining the potential impact to fisheries and fish health in Mill Creek and Shade’s Mill Reservoir.

The report concluded there is no evidence to suggest the fuel spill will have long-term effects on Mill Creek or Shade’s Mill Reservoir, and it is not expected the spill will pose an ongoing unacceptable risk to downstream fish.

The report states components of jet A-1 fuel are not expected to bioaccumulate in fish, therefore, the release is not expected to increase exposure to petroleum hydrocarbons for recreational anglers in the area of Mill Creek and Shade’s Mill Reservoir.