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EPA Assists With Oil Spill Clean-up at Lake Paloona

04 November 2008
Officers representing the Environment Protection Authority are assisting Hydro Tasmania to install large booms and skimmers at Lake Paloona as work continues to clean-up oil spilt from the Devils Gate Power Station, south of Devonport. Director EPA Warren Jones says the EPA was notified on Saturday night by Hydro Tasmania about the spill of a quantity of turbine oil as a result of a bearing failure late last week. "The Devils Gate Power Station was shut down and the spilt oil was contained in the upper part of Lake Paloona," Mr Jones said. "While it is hard to say exactly how much oil has been spilt, officers from the EPA who have inspected the scene estimate it could be between 500 and 1000 litres." "The affected area is approximately one kilometre long and roughly 30 metres wide - the width of Lake Paloona at that point" Mr Jones said. "Lake Paloona has been boomed downstream of the spill and no oil has escaped the lake." Mr Jones said Tasmania is part of the National Plan coordinated by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority to provide oil and chemical pollution response services and EPA officers have brought in equipment from the State's stockpile to assist the Hydro in their efforts to clean-up the oil spill. This includes a heavy-duty inflatable boom, a large skimmer and a flexi-dam. "The intention is to corral the already contained oil into the large boom, skim the oil off the surface and transfer the waste into the flexi-dam, where it will be then pumped out and taken away for recycling," Mr Jones said. Mr Jones said the four staff representing the EPA have also been monitoring the wildlife in the area and have reported no sign of any oiled water birds. "However, wildlife rescue officers will be alerted if any signs of oiled wildlife are discovered," Mr Jones said. EPA officers will remain on the scene to provide advice and assistance until the clean-up operation is completed.
Getting the large boom ready as part of the efforts to clean-up the contained oil.
Officers representing the EPA are assisting Hydro Tasmania with the clean-up operation at Lake Paloona.
The Devils Gate Power Station has been shut down and the spilt oil contained in the upper part of Lake Paloona.
This photo shows the teams getting the floating boom in place prior to commencing the sweep. The large boom is part of equipment in the State's stockpile to combat marine spills.