Over 100 workers and several vacuum trucks continue to clean up oil after a pipeline operated by ExxonMobil burst near Mayflower on Friday. The oil spill, which has been contained, caused officials in Faulkner County to evacuate 22 homes as lawns and streets in the Northwood subdivision became drenched in oil.
Heavy rains over the weekend caused some to worry about the effects of runoff into Lake Conway, though that danger has been prevented. Faulkner County Judge Allen Dodson says workers are using several methods to control the spill.“We're continuing to strengthen underflow weirs or underflow dykes, really just to control rainwater runoff,” says Dodson. There are approximately 13-16 vacuum trucks. We call them vac-trucks, vacuuming surface oil off of water we've retained,” he says.
After containing the spill, workers are now focusing on cleaning up the affected neighborhood, says Dodson.“Operations that are new include pressure washing of the streets. That process is underway. I think they're monitoring how much they can pressure wash without actually damaging the asphalt.”
“You know a lot of oil that came through there, in excess of 2,000 barrels, less than 10,000 barrels. We don't know the exact number yet. Crews there have removed all of what we call free product, which is standing oil,” says Dodson.
The pipeline, which carries oil from Illinois to Texas, was installed in the late 1940's .