A pipeline in Iowa has leaked nearly 140,000 gallons of diesel onto a nearby farm.
The pipeline, owned by Magellan Midstream Partners, was built in the early 1950’s and runs through several midwestern states. The leak is coming from a 12-inch underground pipe and has so far leaked 138,000 gallons of diesel fuel.
The leak occurred three miles north and one mile wast of Hanlontown. The pool of the spill spans about an acre and a half. Repairs are underway for the ruptured portion of the pipeline and the leak has been contained.
According to Jeff Vansteenburg of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, “It’s a big one – it’s significant.” Vansteenburg also stated that taxpayers would not have to pay for the cost of the cleanup. That cost lies with the pipeline company.
According to Magellan Midstream Partners, cleanup is underway and much of the diesel has been recovered, however there is no estimate for how long cleanup will take for the remainder. Staff from the company, along with representatives from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and the Environmental Protection Agency, are on site to supervise the cleanup.
The diesel has contaminated soil in the area, but according to officials does not pose an active threat to public health. None of fuel reached waterways.
The leak set off an alarm around 5:30 a.m., prompting staff to close off the pipeline from Rosemount, Minnesota to Mason City. Once the leak was identified local authorities were notified, as Iowa Code requires any leaks to be reported to authorities within six hours of discovery.
The spill will mark the largest U.S. diesel spill since 2010. The cause of the leak is still unknown.