Corps reports transformer oil spill in Snake River

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BURBANK -- About 44 gallons of new transformer oil leaked into the Snake River at Ice Harbor Dam on Monday morning, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reported.

The leak occurred while maintenance staff was replacing the oil in three of the dam's six power transformer heat exchangers or "cooling units," at the dam, Corps officials said in a release.

About 64 gallons of oil leaked from an open transfer connection. Approximately 15 gallons were recovered in the dam by the staff and five gallons remained in the oil transfer hoses, leaving 44 gallons of oil unaccounted for and assumed to have eventually been discharged to the river.

Spill-response teams deployed collection booms in the river where oil sheens were spotted. Cleanup and recovery operations continued into Tuesday.

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