River advocates investigating full extent of Musconetcong River diesel fuel spill
by Douglas B. Brill Sunday April 05, 2009, 12:13 PM
River advocates are trying to assess the damage caused when diesel fuel spilled into the Musconetcong River from a truck stop in Bloomsbury.
The spill had reached the Delaware River last night. It is unclear whether the fuel is still spreading.
Tracy Carluccio of the Delaware Riverkeeper Network, citing the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, said 100 gallons of fuel spilled into the Musconetcong from Travel Centers of America in Bloomsbury.
Beth Styler Barry of the Musconetcong Watershed Association said that estimate sounds low. She plans to kayak the river to survey damage.
"As far as what damage it has done, I hope to get a better idea of that today," Barry said.
Carluccio said the spill might appear larger than it is since the fuel has stayed on the rivers' surface.
"A hundred gallons can cover a lot of the surface of the water," she said. "It can make a sheen for a long, long distance."
The fuel is unlikely to damage the river bed since it has stayed on top of the water but it could stick to river banks and hurt wildlife there, Carluccio said.
Both advocates said a contractor has begun cleanup efforts.
The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection did not return calls Saturday and did not immediately return a call today.
Travel Centers of America could not immediately be reached today.
A worker for Northstar Environmental recovers oil product from an underground water and oil separator tank at the Bloomsbury truck stop where officials believe a diesel spill into the Musconetcong River originated.