News Release 114

Department responds to Mississippi County oil spill

Volume 38-114 (For Immediate Release)
Contact: Larry Archer

JEFFERSON CITY, MO, MARCH 10, 2010 – The Department of Natural Resources is overseeing the cleanup of a small oil spill that occurred Saturday in the Mississippi County town of East Prairie.

The department’s emergency response line was contacted by an East Prairie resident Tuesday afternoon with concerns of an unknown substance that had been spilled at the intersection of Janey Lane and South Martin Street on Saturday.

The resident reported that the substance, which upon investigation was determined to be used oil, had spilled from a buried storage tank that had been removed from a yard and was being moved when it came off the truck at the intersection. The owner of the tank, after contacting the county highway department for guidance, returned Saturday to cover the approximately 300-square-foot area with sand to prevent the oil from spreading.

The department dispatched an emergency responder from its Southeast Regional Office in Poplar Bluff, who contacted the tank’s owner and arranged for the sand to be removed. The responder returned to the site this morning to oversee the cleanup.

The department’s environmental emergency responders are called to the scene of more than 300 emergencies each year, including fires, traffic accidents, leaking storage tanks and other incidents that could have a negative environmental impact. The department’s 24-hour spill line receives more than 1,600 incident reports annually.

To report an environmental emergency please contact the spill line at 573-634-2436. For more information contact the Missouri Department of Natural Resources at 800-361-4827 or 573-751-3443, or visit the department's Web page at