New information released on Tuesday means the timeline of when the oil spill into the North Saskatchewan River began is different than first thought.
Initial reports suggested the spill began Thursday but we now know it appears to have started much earlier.
As is required when incidents like this happen, an initial report Husky has filed with the Ministry of Economy says the spill began 12 to 14 hours earlier.
The report shows at 8:00 p.m. Wednesday night, a pipeline release was discovered on the south side of the North Saskatchewan River. Two-hundred and fifty cubic metres of blended crude oil was released into the shore and water. According to Husky the response didn’t arrive until Thursday morning.
“I don’t have the details on the Wednesday night activities,” explained Al Pate on Tuesday, Husky’s clean-up and recovery head.
Pate insists, regardless of when the spill began, they are confident on how much leaked – 250 cubic metres according to the report.
“The system we use measures volumes from one point in the line to another point so the date we’ve got is accurate in terms of loss of volumes,” Pate said.
So far 69,000 Saskatchewan residents are now using alternate water sources or under boil water advisories. Three cities – North Battleford, Prince Albert, and Melfort and surrounding areas will likely see an oily sheen on nearby water.
Health regions are working to ensure supplies aren’t contaminated and both households and businesses can call the Husky emergency line to make a claim. The number is 1-844-461-7991, people can also email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Husky is taking full responsibility. So far some wildlife has died as a result, including birds, fish, and a frog.
Work to clean-up the shoreline and the river continues.