Coast Guard continues to monitor cleanup efforts at Oak Creek Power Plant site

Coast Guard District 9 NewsMILWAUKEE – Coast Guard pollution responders, working in cooperation with federal and state agencies, are continuing to oversee the environmental response this afternoon to Monday’s landslide in Oak Creek, Wis.

Monday morning, a landside occurred on the south side of the bluff adjacent to the We Energies Power Plant in Oak Creek that resulted in construction equipment being pushed into Lake Michigan. There were no reported injuries.

In addition to the construction equipment and other debris, an unknown amount of coal ash entered Lake Michigan. At present, potential impact to land and water are unknown, pending completion of soil and water sampling by scientists working with the Environmental Protection Agency and Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

Coast Guard pollution responders have been on site every day to monitor the cleanup efforts. Those cleanup efforts have resulted in the deployment of two rows of containment boom in Lake Michigan. Skimmers also have been deployed to remove debris from the surface of the water.

Debris removal is also taking place on land. Soil and ash are being removed and transported to a landfill on the Oak Creek site. Three berms have been constructed to protect the crews performing this work and to prevent additional debris from possibly entering the lake in the event of another landslide.

Ongoing operations include identifying all material that has entered Lake Michigan, retrieving that material, and disposing of it properly.

The cause of the accident is unknown at this time.

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