McKenzie River reopens following oil spill

The Hendrick's Bridge and Bellinger boat ramps opened Friday and the Hayden boat ramp will open on Saturday.

Posted: Mar 30, 2018 6:15 PM
Updated: Mar 30, 2018 6:20 PM

SPRINGFIELD, Ore., -- Officials from the Department of Environmental Quality said the cleanup from the oil spill on the McKenzie River is complete and several boat ramps have reopened.

The Hendrick's Bridge and Bellinger boat ramps opened Friday and the Hayden boat ramp will open on Saturday. Even though the boat ramps are open, officials said boaters should still be cautious because there could still be equipment on the river.

Officials from D.E.Q. said crews with International Paper finished the cleanup of the interior pipe Thursday and were able to test the flow of the pipe to make sure it wasn't leaking. Officials said the tests went well and D.E.Q. gave the company clearance to resume normal operations. 


Katherine Benenati, a D.E.Q. spokesperson, said they will continue to monitor the area to make sure there are no issues moving forward.
She said at this time, they are not aware of any lasting environmental impacts. 

"I appreciate everyone's patience, the D.E.Q. appreciates everyone's patience, and we know these cleanups can take a while but we wanted to make sure it was done right," Benenati said.

Mike Brinkley, a fisherman at the Hendrick's Bridge ramp, said he was disappointed to see the ramps closed because it is a good time of the year to fish, but said he's excited to see the cleanup complete.

"It's wonderful, it's a perfect day and we are ready to go," Brinkley said.  "So I'm looking forward to a nice, beautiful day of fishing."

Officials said that now that the cleanup is under control, they can begin an investigation to determine if the spill could have been prevented and if there will be any repercussions for the company.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 11188

Reported Deaths: 230
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Multnomah269472
Marion174353
Washington172020
Clackamas91427
Umatilla8867
Union3671
Lincoln3634
Lane2713
Malheur2661
Deschutes2290
Yamhill1719
Linn16810
Polk16812
Jackson1640
Jefferson1450
Morrow1321
Klamath1311
Wasco1021
Benton996
Hood River990
Douglas560
Clatsop550
Josephine541
Coos520
Columbia470
Lake240
Crook171
Tillamook150
Wallowa120
Curry90
Baker80
Sherman30
Harney20
Gilliam10
Grant10
Unassigned00
Wheeler00
Eugene
Clear
62° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 54°
Feels Like: 62°
Corvallis
Clear
62° wxIcon
Hi: 79° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 62°
Roseburg
Clear
70° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 55°
Feels Like: 70°
North Bend
Clear
59° wxIcon
Hi: 69° Lo: 54°
Feels Like: 59°
KEZI Radar
KEZI Temperatures
KEZI Planner

LATEST FORECAST

Community Events