ARLINGTON, Va. (WDVM) — Heating oil discovered in a stream is causing concern in Arlington County.
On Friday morning, authorities discovered that heating oil from an improperly abandoned tank leaked into the stream on the 4200 block of S. Four Run Mile Drive near Barcroft Park, prompting concern for local residents and their pets.
“It’s a petroleum product so as with any petroleum product you don’t want it on your skin. It might be an irritant, but the bigger concern is that the pets would be in the water and would be ingesting it,” said Captain Ben O’Bryant with Arlington County Fire Department.
The stream runs adjacent to the Shirlington Dog Park where pet owners often let their dogs go for a swim.
“We’ll come to this dog park about every other day,” said Bob Taylor, Arlington resident.
“She loves it, she’ll hop in and lay in it and just not move. It’s her favorite part of this park,” said Dan Donaghy, Arlington Resident.
Around 12 o’clock Friday afternoon county employees could be seen installing signs to warn pet owners of the spill. Some owners said they weren’t surprised to hear the news.
“It happens, whether its storm runoff or sometimes when they were doing construction upstream other things would get in there so I would say I’m not surprised,” Donaghy said.
Authorities have installed boom filters to contain the oil while the product naturally dilutes itself. Residents and pets should avoid the creek for the next 24 to 48 hours.