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Cornelius News

Colonial spill: Estimate doubled from Jan. 6

Photo: Lisa Sorg/NC Policy Watch

Jan. 22. By Dave Yochum. In the space of two weeks, Colonial Pipeline has again revised the size of the gasoline spill, doubling it to roughly 1.2 million gallons. The spill in Huntersville this past August was originally estimated at 272,000 gallons, then 354,000 gallons in November and, as recently as Jan. 6., at nearly 500,000 gallons.

Colonial now says 28,571 barrels have leaked. With each barrel containing 42 gallons, the math says 1.2 million gallons leaked into the ground just off Huntersville-Concord Road.

The pipeline, which stretches from New Jersey to Texas, is more than 40 years old.

Clean-up under way

Colonial has recovered approximately 15,754 barrels of product. In a statement, Colonial said recovery work is continuing. On Jan. 6, the company said repairs would be completed within three to five weeks.

The NCDEQ is requiring Colonial to restore groundwater quality and submit monthly reports that include soil sampling and public water system hook-ups for residents.

Colonial Pipeline has purchased three homes nearby. The leak was discovered by two teenagers riding ATVs in the Oehler Nature Preserve, who saw liquid bubbling at the surface of the ground.

Colonial Pipeline

Colonial Pipeline Company System Map