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Construction equipment causes oil spill near Watford City

WATFORD CITY, N.D. - Construction equipment that struck a valve on a pipeline caused about 225 barrels, or 9,450 gallons, of crude oil to spill in McKenzie County, the North Dakota Department of Health said Friday.

WATFORD CITY, N.D. – Construction equipment that struck a valve on a pipeline caused about 225 barrels, or 9,450 gallons, of crude oil to spill in McKenzie County, the North Dakota Department of Health said Friday.

The pipeline, owned by American Midstream (Bakken) LLC, is about four miles southwest of Watford City.

The spill occurred on Oct. 22, but the company didn’t report it to the health department until Thursday, said Karl Rockeman, director of the Division of Water Quality. The health department requires spills to be reported within 24 hours.

“We will be discussing that with the responsible party,” Rockeman said.

The company told the health department the spill was contained to the area that was being excavated and the oil and contaminated soil have been removed. However, the health department is still investigating to make sure that’s accurate, Rockeman said.

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Rockeman said he’s not sure what type of excavation work was ongoing, but he believes it was a contractor of American Midstream doing the work.

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