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Oil Leaking Into Lake Ariel


LAKE ARIEL — Crews are trying to find the source of oil in Lake Ariel, according to state officials.

The spill was discovered late Monday in the lake in Wayne County.  People could smell the fumes of oil before realizing it had turned part of the lake red.

Now that the spill is contained, crews continue to look for the source.

People who live around the lake say they smelled the problem before they discovered it in the lake.

A hazmat response team was chipping through the thick ice on Lake Ariel, working to stop the spread of home heating oil that spilled near the lake and found its way in.

The waters were turned the color of the dye in that oil and you could smell it the closer you got to the lake.

“We had a spill up above, followed the ditch line down cross the road and got in the lake here,” said emergency management official Jerry Peet.

Peet is with Lake Township. He and township supervisors took a look at the mess in the lake and said no one can say yet how much oil spilled.

“You take a little droplet of oil and drop it on water. It spreads out a lot so it’s very hard to tell how much is down here.”

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection spent most the day investigating the spill focusing on the nearby Howe Oil Company. Officials say the oil company had a delivery Friday and a tank was overfilled.

A clean-up crew was called in and according to investigators, believed they had the oil spill contained.

DEP officials say they weren’t notified until late Monday when the oil was discovered in the lake.

Heavy machinery was used to dig down, looking for how the oil got into underground pipes and then into the lake.

Everyone in Lake Ariel around the area of the oil spill has well water, including Liberty Restaurant and Buffet and Kay’s Restaurant.  Both restaurants and homeowners will have to monitor their water to make sure it’s not contaminated by that oil spill.

Silvia Rivezzi has lived at Lake Ariel her whole life and hopes that however the spill happened, something will be done to keep it from happening again.

“I think it’s just a nice place, used to swim here as kids.”

The president of a group that owns the lake would only say he wants to make sure the spill is cleaned up properly.

A spokesperson for DEP says the oil company and or the trucking company that delivered the oil late last week will likely get what’s called a notice of violation, although right now, the exact cause of that spill and how much was spilled is still under investigation.

29 comments

  • -UG-

    As said eariler, the fish were killed by over treatment of the lake with copper sulfate.

    This is the second ‘spill’ in 10 or so years, the first of which was caused by overfilling a homeowners heating oil tank. DEP did not do much with that problem.

    As beautiful as that lake is, it is NOT in good health. SOME of the shareholders in the corporation that owns the lake are more concerned with legal battles over who can access the lake than they are about its health. It is sad.

    For people who live on the lake (or any lake for that matter), property value is the last thing on their minds.

  • anonymous

    I believe that Matt is on the right track. When a body of water is found to be contaminated the largest and closest source of that contaminant is the most likely to be the cause, accidental or not. In this case it’s across the road. That is called using logic. I am well aware that being exposed to logical thinking confuses and scares most people in this area, which explains the angry responses by cherry and Rocky.

    • Rocky

      Could you please explain how my response was angry???? I started off saying Matt was correct. Maybe you should proof read your comments.

  • PAcitizen

    Wow I am concerned about the water and the fish in the lake… do people who live around the lake use the lake water for drinking purposes? With the Ice on the lake wont know for sure until it thaws how much damage was truly done.. How can they be sure it is contained with Ice on the lake that oil could cover the entire surface depending on the amount of oil.

  • Rocky

    You are correct Matt. Thank you for your comment. I reside year round on Lake Ariel. We are all concerned about the Lake and the surrounding area. DEP has been here all day and I see workers doing there best to keep the spill contained. Let’s wait and get all the facts before we start coming up with wild theories and stupid comments.

  • cherry

    well Matt, seems ur an idiot too. i read above, plain as day, that they are unsure if the leak is coming from howes. yet you say it is.

    Like being called an idiot, or would you prefer MORON?

  • matt

    You people leaving comments don’t have a clue what you are talking about. The chemicals put in the chemicals lake was an entirely different issue. This is a fuel oil spill that made its way into the lake from howes oil across the road. It has nothing to do with gas drillers either. People need to think before leaving comments you sound like idiots.

      • jhosk

        It’s “their”, sir, not “there”. Let’s get it right. It annoys myself to butcher the language. Myself was brought up to respect the language.

  • steve kent (@skent101)

    People when are you going to realize NOBODY CARES! Wildlife doesn’t mean anything to people anymore if it ever did. That’s why there are only 9 comments. Its very sad. Oil =$$ and that overpowers everything.

  • Mary

    No the reason for the oil spill was an over zealous use of a chemical which is used in the lake yearly to control algae. They dumped it too early and nearly 10,000 fish were killed. Thank the landowners assoc for that one.

    • Lost Treasure

      SO FAR, the company must be the one. Let us all see if the evidence is found.If not it must be the governments ” responsibility.

    • JP

      Howe oil has been in that location FOREVER, they likely got in before people cared about what was going into the lake.

Comments are closed.


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