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Press Release

Swanson Creek Oil Spill

Phone: (301) 579-2023 or (972) 797-2527

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE)
Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR)
Potomac Electric Power Company (PEPCO)

April 24, 2000

Oil Spill Cleanup Efforts Continue; No Oil Sheen Observed in Patuxent River Today

No areas were adversely affected by the weekend rain and wind. Cleanup efforts continue in portions of shoreline and creeks of the Patuxent River and in the Swanson Creek Marsh area, which is on Pepco's power plant property. Nearly 700 people, including government agencies, Pepco workers and Pepco contractors will be involved in today's efforts.

Today's operations will include the removal and replacement of oil-soaked boom. The booms that are being removed are in areas that are no longer considered to be threatened by the spill. Areas slated for boom removal are: Broomes Island (North Side), Nan Cove, Rock Creek, Ben Creek, Jack Bay, Battle Creek, Sheridan Point, Buzzard Island, St. Thomas Creek, Cole Creek (Outer Boom), Riverside at Roslin Creek, Coatigan Run, Horse Landing and Spring Creek.

More detailed cleaning work is also underway. Those efforts include cleaning individual properties affected by the oil-from individual plots of grass, to beach areas, to entire boat docks. Flushing and raking techniques are being utilized in that process. This effort will continue until these areas are as clean as possible.

Animal Rescue Efforts:

The US Fish and Wildlife Service, Maryland Department of Natural Resources and animal rescue organizations, including Tri-State Bird & Rescue Research and Chesapeake Wildlife Sanctuary are picking up animals for rehabilitation. More than 98 birds, turtles, snakes and terrapins have been captured and are going through the process of rehabilitation. The rehabilitation process involves cleaning the animals and providing them with necessary medical attention by veternarians. The animals are then housed until they are fit to be released.


  1. The entire Patuxent River is open to vessel traffic. However, there are creeks that remain boomed off. A Marine Information Broadcast (MIB) is in effect. An MIB is a U.S. Coast Guard issued radio broadcast that announces the transit conditions of the river. Commercial and recreational craft are not to cross boomed areas. In addition, vessels are asked to keep the wake down where booms or cleanup crews are present. Inquiries from commercial vessels requiring transit into boomed areas can be directed to Coast Guard activities Baltimore Port Safety and Security at (410) 576-2693. Recreational users should contact the on-scene Maryland Natural Resources police officer at (888) 584-3110.
  2. All advisories relating to fish, crabs, oyster and clam beds, and beaches and shorelines are still in effect.

Websites where you can find more spill-related information:

Region 3 | Mid-Atlantic Cleanup | Mid-Atlantic Superfund |EPA Home | EPA Superfund Homepage

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