Nova Scotia

Crews working to clean up diesel in Shubie Canal

Cleanup continues in Dartmouth after a tanker truck and a passenger vehicle collided on Highway 107 Monday, spilling diesel fuel into the Shubenacadie Canal.

Cleanup continues in Dartmouth after a tanker truck and a passenger vehicle collided on Highway 107 Monday, spilling diesel fuel into the Shubenacadie Canal.

More than 1,300 litres of diesel fuel spilled into the Canal between Lake Charles and Lake William.

"The incident couldn't have happened in a worse location because we have the canal right below it," said Derek DeGrass, Compliance Officer for the Department of Environment.

Six heavy-duty booms have been placed in the canal to contain the oil.

The owner of the tanker has hired a consultant to do a shoreline assessment of the damage.

Work has started to excavate the ground beneath the overpass where the fuel landed.

Degrass said it's fortunate that the spill was just diesel fuel.

"You know, diesel is a lighter type of fuel and so as a result of it coming into a body of water it has a tendency to dissipate a little faster than a heavier fuel."

Work started Wednesday to excavate the ground where the fuel landed.

"They're really able to get into the small little coves and nooks and crannies of the lake and down the canal and explore absolutely every area."

Degrass said people in the area should be careful if they use the water and notice a sheen of oil.

"Folks just need to use some caution if they're thinking of going out and swimming and if they see something on the water. And certainly for drinking purposes, if there is anybody drinking this water we probably urge some caution there as well."

So far, environment officials have heard from half a dozen homeowners with information about the water.

DeGrass said he's not sure how long the assessment and cleanup could take.

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