Trail Times file photo

Fertilizer plant re-opens at Teck Trail after spill of ‘acidic solution’

Ministry says no public health or safety concerns from Tuesday morning incident

The fertilizer plant at Teck Trail has re-started after acidic effluent, originating from fertilizer operations, was discharged into the Columbia River early Tuesday.

Read more: Teck reports ‘low pH’ incident

The majority of the release occurred between 2 a.m. and 4:30 a.m., says Teck spokesperson Carol Vanelli Worosz.

“Our monitoring system alarms were triggered as designed when monitors registered a low pH reading, resulting in an internal response to address the issue,” she told the Trail Times.

“The investigation that is underway will determine what caused the pH level drop at the outfall.”

Reported as a “low pH incident,” the term means discharge at the C-IV outfall, located near the northern boundary of Teck Trail Operations, was acidic as opposed to neutral.

“We take this incident very seriously,” Vanelli Worosz said. “It is important to note that, based on an initial assessment, that the release does not create any health or safety risk to people, fish or wildlife other than potential short-term impacts on the aquatic life immediately at the outfall point.”

Tuesday afternoon, the B.C. Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy reported that pH levels in the water had returned to normal limits and there were no public health or safety concerns.

Teck Trail released a news statement as well, informing that fertilizer operations had been temporarily shutdown due to an acidic spill into the river.

The company reported that authorities from Emergency Management BC, the BC Ministry of Environment and Climate Change, and Environment and Climate Change Canada had been notified immediately.

B.C. Spills Response reported the incident shortly after 9 a.m. on Feb. 26.

“Initially, the acidic solution was entering the Columbia River but it is now being diverted into an on-site reservoir,” the report said. “An Environmental Emergency Response Officer will continue to monitor this incident and further updates will be provided when new information is available.”

The response report was updated at 1:40 p.m. that afternoon.

“The Teck Trail fertilizer operations plant is now in compliance,” the release stated. “The acidic solution that was diverted into an on-site reservoir will be neutralized prior to being released. Columbia River water testing indicates pH levels are within normal limits. The emergency phase of the response is complete, however the B.C. Conservation Officer Service will continue to investigate this incident.”



newsroom@trailtimes.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Slocan Valley to be ‘lit up’ with high-speed internet in 12 months

125 kilometres of fibre-optic cable to be laid from Nakusp to Playmore Junction

Police bust drug operation in Castlegar

Man charged, will go to court in August

Vigil re-affirms belief in peace, acceptance in wake of New Zealand massacre

Nearly 100 show up for solemn event at Mir Centre for Peace

RED resort announces new ski lift

Topping lift will add new ski area to resort, reduce bottleneck on Motherload chair

Update: Bodies recovered from Pend d’Oreille River crash

To help support the family, a fundraiser has been set up at Kootenay Savings in Fruitvale

Sparks fly as SUV speeds down wrong side of Highway 1 trying to flee RCMP

Captured on video, the vehicle headed westbound against oncoming traffic before crashing

1,300 cruise ship passengers rescued by helicopter amid storm off Norway’s coast

Rescue teams with helicopters and boats were sent to evacuate the cruise ship under extremely difficult circumstances

B.C. university to offer first graduate program on mindfulness in Canada

University of the Fraser Valley says the mostly-online program focuses on self-care and well being

Province announces $18.6 million for B.C. Search and Rescue

The funding, spread over three years, to pay for operations, equipment, and training

Late-season wave of the flu makes its round in B.C.

BC Centre for Disease Control reported 50 per cent jump in flu cases in first weeks of March

Tofino’s housing crisis causing some to seek shelter at the local hospital

Tofino’s housing crisis is pushing the town’s ‘hidden homeless’ population into the forefront.

Sentencing judge in Broncos crash calls for carnage on highways to end

Judge Inez Cardinal sentenced Jaskirat Singh Sidhu to eight years

2 fires in Victoria caused by cigarettes prompts warning from deputy fire chief

Two separate fires caused by cigarette butts were avoidable

‘Families torn apart:’ Truck driver in fatal Broncos crash gets 8-year sentence

Judge Inez Cardinal told court in Melfort, Sask., that Sidhu’s remorse and guilty plea were mitigating factors

Most Read