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Small mistake turns into a large diesel spill on the Rideau Canal

Click to play video: 'A small mistake turns into a large diesel spill on the Rideau Canal' A small mistake turns into a large diesel spill on the Rideau Canal
A small mistake turns into a large diesel spill on the Rideau Canal – May 11, 2021

A clean-up is underway along the Rideau Canal in Smiths Falls after a tour boat from Le Boat rental company mistakenly leaked diesel.

The company says a water line ended up in the diesel tank of one of their vessels on Thursday, causing over 30 litres of diesel to spill into the canal. Fire crews and a third-party remediation company hired by Le Boat responded to the scene after the incident occurred.

Le Boat is taking the satiation very seriously and says it is “working very closely with many levels of government as well as the environmental clean-up crews to contain the spill”

“As a result, we have reviewed and are looking to improve our internal communications, policies and procedures,” Le Boat said in a statement, read by sales and marketing manager, Lisa McLean.

Read more: COVID-19: NCC opening up Ottawa parkways for active use as city plans park restrictions

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The Mayor of Smiths Falls, Shawn Pankow, said the environmental company is completing the final clean-up after working 15 to 20 hours over the weekend.

“They’re making sure that any residual amounts are contained, pumped out and looked after, and that there is no long-term impact to the environment here or downstream,” Pankow said.

The canal is widely used for water activities such as boating and swimming and locals are concerned. But the Ministry of the Environment said the spill is not likely to cause any significant impacts to the environment.

Pankow said that although the situation is very unfortunate, mistakes are made and Le Boat has taken full responsibility.

“All of us make errors from time to time. Unfortunately, these things happen and in this situation, the effort has been made by Le Boat and by the town, and of course, by hiring Tomlinson Environmental, to make sure that the damage is minimized,” Pankow said.

Once the clean-up is complete, the mayor anticipates the Rideau Canal will be back to full operation by Tuesday.

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