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Two Hazardous Releases for PMLP

Peabody Municipal Light Plant (PMLP) has two new pollution problems:  an oil leak from a peaker generator at the Waters River Power Station on Pulaski St on July 26 AND a release of oil or hazardous materials at 201 Warren Street on May 25.

Files submitted electronically by PMLP to the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) provide details on the 20 gallon, #2 diesel oil spill that resulted from work on the new power plant.

According to PMLP representative Bryan Howcroft, “The release was caused by a gasket in a pipe flange.  The piping is all new as part of a construction project and the general contractor, Massachusetts Municipal Wholesale Elecric Company (MMWEC) construction team made some errors that led to the rupture.”

The release affected crushed stone and two catch basins that daylight into a nearby stream.  A boom was placed into the catch basins.

The stormwater structure is about 40 feet deep and showed signs of petroleum staining and seeping through a small gap between the structure and the manhole.  “However, no sheen or recoverable oil was present in the water…PMLP operators took swift and decisive initial action, catching the release quickly, and immediately deploying absorbents around the spill site,” said DEP Responder Greg Murray. “The action prevented recoverable product from reaching the stormwater system and impacting the nearby wetland.”

The DEP conducted a field excavation and found recoverable oil to be recovered with absorbents as needed and to remove the recoverable released product from the impacted catch basin.  The spill requires the removal of 30 cubic yards of contaminated soil.

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