Chemical spill in St. Clair River
CTV News generic 470
Published Sunday, August 19, 2012 2:22PM EDT
Crews are working to clean up a chemical spill in the St. Clair River. It happened Saturday morning as a boat was being loaded at the Styrolution plant in Sarnia.
Officials say ethylbenzene leaked into the water, but they haven’t said how much.
Ethylbenzene is a colourless liquid that has a sweet, gasoline-like odour. It’s used to make a plastic product called styrene, as well as a solvent for plastic coatings and rubber and plastic wrap.
“We want to assure everybody that we’re doing everything we can to clean up, and the safety of our employees and community is our first priority,” said site director Dawn Williams.
Residents were told that their water is still safe to drink.
Chatham-Kent Hydro closed the water intake for Walpole Island and Wallaceburg. Officials told CTV that water reserves in both communities are sufficient enough to last through the cleanup process.
Styrolution is paying for the cleanup, but the Canadian Coast Guard and the Ministry of the Environment is overseeing the project.