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Feds say oil spill sheen dissipating in Ohio River

Published on NewsOK Modified: August 20, 2014 at 4:18 pm •  Published: August 20, 2014

CINCINNATI (AP) — Most of a reddish-brown sheen created by thousands of gallons of fuel oil that spilled into the Ohio River from a power plant was dissipating as a cleanup estimated to cost hundreds of thousands of dollars a day continued Wednesday, federal officials said.

Officials with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency are coordinating the response to the spill, which occurred at a Duke Energy power plant near Cincinnati late Monday. About 1,000 gallons of oil and contaminated water had been recovered as of Wednesday, the EPA said. The federal agency also said it expects cleanup to cost about $250,000 a day, based on Duke's estimates. The Charlotte, North Carolina-based company is responsible for cleaning up the estimated 3,000 to 5,000 gallons spilled.

The EPA has not said how long the cleanup is expected to take. Officials say the spill has had minimal impact on wildlife.

A Duke Energy spokeswoman said the spill, at a plant in New Richmond, about 20 miles southeast of Cincinnati, apparently resulted from human error. Officials believe a valve or lever was left open during a transfer of fuel oil from a larger tank to smaller ones, causing an overflow, Duke spokeswoman Sally Thelen said.

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