OXFORD — School officials said this week that oil spill plans have been developed, but efforts are still ongoing to evaluate how to address severely corroded supports under the above-ground oil tank at the Paris Elementary School.

“We’re still doing inspections at the Paris Elementary School,” Operations Committee Chairman Nick DiConzo told the SAD 17 directors at their meeting Monday night.

The development of the oil spill plans and evaluation of the district oil tanks were recommended by the Department of Environmental Protection in a 12-page report issued earlier this month on the Christmas oil spill at Hebron Station School.

More than 1,500 gallons of oil leaked out of the school basement tank shortly after midnight Dec. 25 as it was being filled by a driver from the C.N. Brown oil company of South Paris. A total of 192 gallons were recovered from the wetlands by absorbent pads and most of the rest has been captured in ice and snow. DEP officials hope to start recovering the rest of the oil this spring.

The DEP recommended Oxford Hills School District officials develop and implement spill, prevention, control and countermeasure plans for above ground oil storage tanks and containers in district facilities. The plans, which district officials say were never developed, are required under federal law because of the volume of oil stored.

DEP officials were noncommittal when asked if any administrative action would be taken against the Paris-based C.N. Brown company for its conduct during the event that spilled more than 1,500 gallons of oil in the tank room. The oil seeped under the room into the ground and is now being contained in the nearby wetlands.


A C.N. Brown driver accidentally overfilled the tank, and school officials say the company failed to clean up the oil after it was initially discovered by school maintenance workers in the oil tank room.

“We are focused on the cleanup and prevention of future spills,” DEP spokeswoman Jessamine Logan said. “C.N. Brown and the District have been good partners in the cleanup. C.N. Brown has paid for the contractor.”

Logan said the DEP will continue to provide technical and compliance assistance and follow up to determine what future steps are appropriate.

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