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Incident response: Provo River oil spill
Crude oil spill on Highway 189 in Provo Canyon. Utah Highway Patrol photo.
Joint state and local updates on oil spill in Provo Canyon
PROVO CANYON — No drinking water is affected following a crude oil spill into Provo River on Saturday.
Today, at about 10:00 a.m., a semi truck hauling two tankers filled with crude oil crashed in Provo Canyon. The semi was driving west near mile post 13.
Currently Highway 189 in Provo Canyon is closed at both ends.
The Utah Highway Patrol reports that the driver attempted to make a lane change when he hit a patch of slush. He lost control of the semi, which then veered left and crashed into the median barrier. Both the truck and trailers rolled over. The truck came to rest across all eastbound and westbound lanes.
The front tank, holding approximately 4,500 gallons of crude oil, ruptured and spilled most of its contents. Potentially, 1,000 gallons of crude oil spilled in the river, but Utah government agencies expect there will be no impacts to drinking water, as the intakes for the Don A Christiansen Regional Water Treatment plant in Orem were closed before the crude oil could reach it. That plant will draw from other water reservoirs while the intakes are closed.
Jordan Valley Water Conservancy District also uses water from the Provo River, but water from the river is not being diverted to treatment plants. Jordan Valley is now drawing water from another source, so they don’t expect any impacts to customers.
Meanwhile, Central Utah Water Conservancy District crews have deployed absorbent booms to contain the spill. Envirocare cleanup crews have responded, as well.
Immediate concerns from the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources include the following:
- Impacts to fish and other aquatic life (invertebrates) living in the river.
- River otters are also present in this part of the river.
- Birds that live along the river.
- Containing the spill before it gets downstream to Utah Lake.
- Monitoring any wildlife impacts during next few days.
The rear tank was not compromised and crews are working out a solution to extract the crude oil.
Information about road closures is available at udottraffic.utah.gov
or on the UDOT Traffic mobile app. Currently, UDOT estimates the closures will last until 7 p.m.
Cleanup efforts for the crude oil spill on Highway 189 in Provo Canyon.
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The destroyed remnants of one of the vehicles that was swept away in a Hildale flash flood Sept. 14, 2015
Utah DEM supported incident response to the devastating Hildale Flood that occurred Sept. 14. The rain event over southern Utah that day led to the deaths of seven canyoneers in Zion National Park, one motorist in the Arizona Strip and three women and nine children in Hildale. One boy is still unaccounted for and is presumed dead. Three boys survived the flash flood.
DEM activated the State EOC to a Level 2 – Partial Activation and sent six employees to support local responders and the Salt Lake Metro Incident Management Team with planning, public information, resource requests and reviewing damaged infrastructure.
Washington County released all official information about the incident here.
We’ve posted videos of the wash and of the responders on YouTube.
A memorial site along Short Creek.
Joseph Jessop, one of the fathers of the victims, speaks at a news conference in Hildale
Debris from the flash flood piles up in this photo
will be April 21, 2016
A record-breaking 960,000 Utahns participated in 2015. Gov. Gary Herbert has challenged Utah to get 1 million Utahns participating for 2016. Registration will be announced this summer at ShakeOut.org/utah. In the mean time, you can upload photos, stories or videos to the ShakeOut website by logging into your profile.
Take time to ramp up your preparedness by visiting our BeReadyUtah.gov program
Since 2012, more than 3.4 million Utahns have participated in the Great Utah ShakeOut. You can also download your own banners to display on your website, blog or Facebook page from the Resources section of the site.
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