Sturgeon Lake fuel spill clean up continues but source still undetermined

Cleanup continues following a fuel spill on Sturgeon Lake in the City of Kawartha Lakes. City of Kawartha Lakes photo

The source of a fuel spill into Sturgeon Lake in late March remains unknown as the City of Kawartha Lakes continues the cleanup and makes plans to reopen the shoreline.

The municipality says its consultant for emergency spills, GHD, determined that approximately 100 litres of weathered diesel fuel spilled into Sturgeon Lake from Thurstonia near Dunsford, about 20 kilometres north of Linsday, Ont.,

The spill, discovered on March 30, prompted the Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit to issue a drinking water advisory on April 3, impacting about 30 homes that draw water from the lake.

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The municipality on Thursday outlined the extensive cleanup operations since the spill’s discovery, which includes work with the Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks. A number of marine and absorbent boons have been utilized in the cleanup process.

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“The source remains unknown and GHD continues to analyze a series of tests that were conducted to help determine the source,” the municipality stated.

The city says on April 13, a proposal was submitted to the ministry to flush, clean and restore the shoreline. On April 18, that proposal was approved.

“To date, we’ve been able to contain the affected shoreline area, extract all of the substances released and prevent any spread of the spill while we continue to investigate the source,” the city stated.

Flushing and cleaning continue and water sample tests will determine when it is safe to reopen the shoreline, the city stated.

The drinking water advisory remains in effect for impacted residents.

“The city is currently sourcing a supply of potable water for the homes identified in the DWA,” the city said.

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