Emergency response to Sunnyside oil spill winding down - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Emergency response to Sunnyside oil spill winding down

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The emergency response to an oil spill in Sunnyside is winding down. The emergency response to an oil spill in Sunnyside is winding down.
SUNNYSIDE, Wash. -

The emergency response to an oil spill in Sunnyside is winding down, and officials say they're turning their attention to signs of long-term damage.

The spill, discovered March 1, came from a feed storage facility tank that leaked more than 1,500 gallons of used motor oil into a series of drainage ditches that discharge into the Yakima River. A sheen was visible as far downstream as Prosser, 24 river miles away from the site.

The Yakima Herald-Republic reports that on Friday, animal rehabilitation experts stopped searching for birds and other animals to rescue, but they'll continue to wash and treat the 17 mallard ducks and 50 geese they rescued. Nineteen birds died from the spill.

State Department of Ecology officials say most cleanup work has been completed, including the deployment of absorbent booms and the vacuuming up of tens of thousands of gallons of contaminated water.

Scientists and technicians now will begin more detailed assessments of damage to the shoreline by soil testing and other methods.

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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