Monday, October 4, 2004
THE DALLES — A sheen from an oil spill at The Dalles Dam was visible from Hood River bridge Friday morning.
Approximately 75 gallons of transformer oil, out of 200 spilled, entered the Columbia River. The oil, believed to contain toxic PCBs, spilled upstream of The Dalles Dam Thursday morning.
Greg deBruler of Columbia Riverkeeper said his group started monitoring and sampling Friday afternoon with the Columbia River Intertribal Fishery Commission. DeBruler said the oil contains between 5 and 10 parts per million PCBs.
Department of Environmental Quality, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Oregon and Washington departments of Ecology have responded, according to a U.S. Fish and Wildlife report.
Bonneville Dam was notified, and the Corps is also working with state health departments.
“We are focusing our efforts on containing the spill upstream,” said Matt Rabe, spokesman for the Corps of Engineers, which operates the dam.
Rabe said the spill happened after a transformer seal was damaged by the extreme weather, spilling 200-300 gallons of oil into the powerhouse. It was discovered at 8 a.m. Thursday; the Corps notified the U.S. Coast Guard National Response Center.
DeBruler said his organization was concerned about the lack of recovery efforts downstream of the dam, considering PCBs’ immediate and long-term impacts on fish and invertebrate wildlife.
Foss Environmental is cleaning up the main slick, Rabe said.
“They’re working diligently to try to get it removed so we don’t have a continual stream downstream,” he said.
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"The tangled skirt" opens run at unique venue
Director Judie Hanel presents the Steve Braunstein play “The Tangled Skirt” in an unusual theatrical setting, River Daze Café. Here, Bailey Brice (Bruce Howard) arrives at a small town bus station and has a fateful encounter with Rhonda Claire (Desiree Amyx Mackintosh). Small talk turns into a deadly game of cat and mouse and both seek advantage. The actors present the story as a staged reading in the café, where large windows and street lights lend themselves to the bus station setting, according to Hanel. Performances are 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 28, Saturday, Sept. 30 and Sunday, Oct. 1. (There is no Friday performance.) Tickets available at the door or Waucoma Bookstore: $15 adults, $12 seniors and children under 15. No children under 9. Enlarge