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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 03:44pm - Sep 25,06
Posts: 266
Location: South Suburbs, IL

Post Posted: 10:33am - Apr 12,17 
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Never like to hear chemical spilled into our fishery.

http://abc7chicago.com/news/us-steel-re ... n/1862338/

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 08:50am - Jun 4,13
Posts: 216
Location: Chicago

Post Posted: 11:29am - Apr 12,17 
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That is no good for sure.

Has anyone seen any indications of the size of the spill?

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 02:18pm - Oct 16,13
Posts: 198

Post Posted: 11:52am - Apr 12,17 
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go to NBC 5 website and look at all the "dark water" HOLY CRAP.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 08:50am - Jun 4,13
Posts: 216
Location: Chicago

Post Posted: 12:03pm - Apr 12,17 
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Oh man. I really hope that darker water is just muddy from recent rains and not all spilled from US Steel, if it is from the spill, that is no small wastewater release!

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 01:35pm - Oct 7,15
Posts: 169
Location: Chicago

Post Posted: 12:29pm - Apr 12,17 
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According to the article, the spill has been contained in a canal and has not reached LM...

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Salmon Unlimited Member
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Joined: 08:06am - Sep 18,06
Posts: 1758
Location: Montrose

Post Posted: 02:03pm - Apr 12,17 
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Check out the video here: https://www.facebook.com/nbcchicago/videos/10158956733290725/

I really hope it was contained in the ditch like the original article says but the video above taken this morning does not appear to show any containment efforts.

Linked video above is from this original NBC 5 article: http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/Chemical-Spill-Forces-Closure-of-Indiana-Dunes-Beaches-419279844.html

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Salmon Unlimited Member
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Joined: 08:41am - Aug 31,03
Posts: 1284
Location: Deerfield

Post Posted: 03:44pm - Apr 12,17 
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With all the rain the Ditch is screaming outbound. The site fo the spill was 800 yards from the lake. How in the world could it not have entered the Lake?

On a side note, anyone know if the Ditch is closed? I'm supposed to bring the Sea Ray from Doyne's to Diversey.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 05:36pm - Mar 30,08
Posts: 1001
Location: Highland, IN

Post Posted: 04:31pm - Apr 12,17 
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They were not allowing any boat traffic in the ditch today when we tried to put in at Portage. We were going to put in at Doynes, but decided to cut our losses in the event that the cleanup and containment would not allow us to exit the ditch. I have to say, it's a load of horse crap. I fished yesterday in the ditch and was probably casting into the discharge site and nobody said boo to me. 24hrs later, it's all over the news and I can't drive past it... And yes the ditch is ripping from all the recent rain and there is no way on earth that whatever was spilled didn't;t end up in the lake.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 06:16am - Apr 6,15
Posts: 369
Location: Valparaiso

Post Posted: 06:12pm - Apr 12,17 
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I used to operate this line at midwest, Electo Plating with chromium hexavalent. This is not the first time this has happened.

PORTAGE — The National Park Service has closed a third beach area — Cowles Bog Beach — at the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore until further notice due to the recent discovery of a toxic spill from U.S. Steel into the Burns Waterway, the park service announced Wednesday afternoon.

"This additional beach closure is based on a recommendation that all beaches within three miles of the discharge be closed as a precaution to protect the health of park visitors," NPS said in the release.

U.S. Steel said an equipment failure Tuesday at its Midwest Plant resulted in a chemical leak into the waterway that forced the shutdown of a drinking water intake along Lake Michigan and several nearby beaches.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is leading the investigation into the spill of hexavalent chromium, a toxic byproduct of industrial processes, into the waterway, which is within 100 yards of Lake Michigan, officials said.

The spill forced the closure Tuesday of Indiana American Water's intake in Ogden Dunes and several beaches, including West Beach and Portage Lakefront and Riverwalk at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore and Ogden Dunes' town beach. On Wednesday, NPS announced the closure of Cowles Bog Beach.

Ogden Dunes officials said the town's drinking water is currently coming from Indiana American's plant in Gary. EPA said the water intake at Ogden Dunes was shut down "out of an abundance of caution."

U.S. Steel reported the release of wastewater Tuesday from the Tin and Tin Free electroplating process, the company said.

"The wastewater is from the process used to treat the steel strip after electroplating, and the rinse water from this process is conveyed via pipe to a dedicated treatment plant," U.S. Steel said in a statement. "The preliminary investigation revealed that an expansion joint in the rinse water pipe failed and resulted in the water being released to a different wastewater treatment plant and ultimately Burns Waterway through an outfall."

U.S. Steel said it notified several other agencies and shut down all of its production processes.

"Additional steps to mitigate the impact are being taken," U.S. Steel said. "These steps include the isolation and repair of the damaged pipe, recovery of material, and the addition of a water treatment compound, sodium trithiocarbonate (CNa2S3), to the waste water treatment plant to convert and aid in the removal of hexavalent chromium."

The company said it would continue to work with local, state and federal agencies to resolve the problem.

Ogden Dunes Town Council President Tim Nelson said town officials are monitoring the situation and awaiting additional information.

"We are gathering information right now. It is too early to tell if there is an impact on the town," Nelson said.

Save the Dunes warned "people and pets should avoid direct contact with Lake Michigan" until further notice. A fish killed is expected to be the result, the nonprofit environmental group said.

Hexavalent chromium is the same "carcinogenic chemical that appeared in the 2000 biographical film, 'Erin Brockovich,'" Save the Dunes said. It can cause reversible and irreversible skin lesions on direct contact, the group said.

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, direct skin contact with hexavalent chromium can cause a nonallergic skin irritation. Contact with non-intact skin also can lead to chrome ulcers. These are small crusted skin sores with a rounded border. They heal slowly and leave scars.

Save the Dunes said Lake Michigan is a primary source of drinking water for many residents of Lake, Porter and LaPorte counties.

The Indiana Department of Environmental Management was notified of the wastewater discharge, but EPA is the lead agency, an IDEM spokesman said.

EPA said Tuesday night it was monitoring Burns Waterway and Lake Michigan and that sampling showed the chemical was not detected in the lake. EPA said it would continue to monitor and provide updates "as needed." The agency had not provided any further updates as of 1 p.m. Wednesday. No activity related to a cleanup could be observed along the waterway Wednesday morning.

Check back at nwi.com for updates to this story.

Times staff writer Joyce Russell contributed to this report.

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