Oil spill cleanup and wildlife assistance at Auburn Pond

(Information on this site is considered to be accurate at the time of posting, but is subject to change as new information becomes available.)  

Tuesday, 2/14/12,  

As of today, all the oiled waterfowl have been captured and sent to the PAWS rehabilitation center. An investigation is underway to identify the responsible party and samples have been taken to confirm the source of the spill.

Monday, 2/13/12, 1:00 pm 

On Sat., Feb. 11, cleanup crews observed a new coating of oil and used cleanup materials to remove it from the surface of the pond. Crews cleaned out a private storm drain line that flows to a catch basin near the site of a hydraulic oil spill from a delivery truck on Thu., Feb. 2. At that time, the spiller’s representatives hired a cleanup contractor and reported to Ecology that the oil had been cleaned from the pavement, and the storm drain checked. Crews continue to monitor the drain line and pond, under Ecology oversight, for further signs of oil.

Wildlife experts hired by the property owner have received WDFW approval of a plan to capture the 10-12 impacted ducks for treatment. The ducks make regular visits to the pond, and the experts have set traps and will capture the birds for cleaning and other care before being released.

Thursday, 2/09/12, 12:38 pm 

Ecology’s environmental laboratory reports its analysis of an oil sample taken from the pond on Feb. 7, 2010. The sample classifies as lube oil, which is a term that describes a range of petroleum products such as motor oils, hydraulic fluids, transmission fluids, mineral oils and transformer oils, among others.

Thursday, 2/09/12, 12:15 pm 

The Washington departments of Ecology (Ecology) and Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) and a property owner are cleaning up an oil spill at a privately owned stormwater retention pond in Auburn.

State officials found that 10 to 12 ducks that frequent the pond at 1232 A Street Northeast have oil on some of their feathers.

The property owner, Auburn Marketplace Association, has cooperated with Ecology and WDFW by hiring environmental cleanup and wildlife experts. They are removing oil from the pond and assessing whether the ducks should be captured for cleaning.

Ecology estimates that three to five gallons of light-colored oil drained to the half-acre pond, which receives stormwater from approximately 10 acres of buildings and parking lots. The source of the spill is still under investigation.

Spill responders have placed oil cleanup materials into the pond and a drainage catch basin. The catch basin appears to have prevented oil from entering a City of Auburn storm drain.

Responders have been at work on this spill since it was reported to Ecology Tuesday afternoon. 

  Photos taken by WDFW Don Noviello.

  Photos taken by Ecology Responder.

  Hybrid ducks by retention pond.

  Overview of pond.







Date of Incident:
February 7, 2012

1232 A Street NW
Auburn, Washington

3-5 gallons of mineral oil

Under Investigation

Responsible Party: Unconfirmed


Ecology news release - Feb. 9, 2012