Rincon and state officials are working to contain a fuel spill that was reported Saturday morning.
Rincon Fire Chief Corey Rahn said a call about the spill, discovered from the 21 Fuel Stop gas station at the corner of Highway 21 and 9th Street, came in around 9 a.m. Saturday. Rincon Fire crews were on the scene until about 3 p.m.
Rahn met with a state Environmental Protection Division representative Monday morning about the spill. How much gasoline seeped out of the tank is unknown, but Rahn estimated it could be as much as 2,000 gallons. The leak also could have started as far back as July, after the last line test was conducted.
The culprit, Rahn said, was a leak in the leak detector. The gasoline spilled into the ground, and Rahn said Thursday’s heavy rain carried some of the fuel into a nearby drainage ditch.
The recent heavy rains also may help in abating the damage, according to Rahn. There is gasoline on top of the water in the ditch.
“With the water table being so high, they’ll be able to contain most of it,” he said.
The station’s fuel pumps were shut down as soon as the leak was confirmed.
The EPD’s corrections and remediation department will formulate a long-term plan, according to Rahn. The monitoring of the spill, to ensure it does not reach the city’s wells, will be a long-term event, the chief said. The spill nearly reached nearby apartments, Rahn said.
Because the spill happened close to Dasher Creek, the EPD, Environmental Protection Agency and the Coast Guard were notified. Dasher Creek is a Savannah River tributary, necessitating the alert to the Coast Guard.
The store remains open for business, but the gas pumps have been shut down, Rahn added.