"The math on this is not very precise. There is 2,700 gallons that's unaccounted for. It's in the water, it's in the soils," Baker told reporters touring the park Wednesday. The event was the first time the state allowed news media access to the park's North Marina, which will remain shuttered to the public through at least the Memorial Day weekend, costing the state's park system much-needed revenue. The South Marina remains open for camping, boating and fishing.
"We apologize for the impact to the public and to the park," Chevron incident commander Patrick Green.
Tests have shown diesel has contaminated groundwater and has reached Willard Bay, but concentrations are diminishing each day, according to DEQ officials.
Chevron is conducting the cleanup with oversight from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Within two weeks the oil company replaced 100 feet of pipe, reactivated the pipeline, and sent the ruptured segment to a lab to determine why and how it failed.
In the hours following the break, diesel crept into a wetland filled with invasive phragmites, a tall water-loving stalked plant, and into a ditch draining runoff from the freeway to Willard Bay Reservoir, a diked freshwater reservoir on the Great Salt Lake just a few hundred yards to the west. Three beaver dams in and near the culvert under the park access road slowed the fuel's progress, making the cleanup a little easier, according to Green.
Crews have removed and replaced contaminated soil from the wetland, leaving it free of phragmites, and pulled fuel-soaked dams and woody debris from the drainage ditch. Crews placed pom-poms made of a special absorbent material that repels water along the tiny stream to mop up hydrocarbons. Booms also line the lake just off the beach for several hundred yards to the north of where the stream empties into the bay.
The smell permeating the area Wednesday was not diesel, but more likely decaying organic material from the "beaver mud" disturbed by the cleanup, Green said. Six beavers were rescued from the spill site, but a pair of wood ducks died along with numerous small fish and some bull frogs.