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Tank battery storage facility owner facing $7,000 in damages after oil spill

NORMAN, Okla. – The operator of a tank battery storage facility claims sabotage is to blame for a recent oil leak.

The Frank Tullius tank battery facility in Norman has been red tagged following a recent oil leak.

“I wouldn't say I’m shocked but concerned, yeah, definitely concerned,” said Roger Clemons, a nearby resident.

Clemons has lived in his Norman home for eight years.

He said a nearby oil spill has caused quite the chatter around the neighborhood.

"I'm as much of a not in my backyard person as anyone,” Clemons said.

The site is only yards away from Clemon’s house.

The site’s operator told NewsChannel 4 he believes someone jumped the fence and tampered with the equipment, causing the spill.

This isn’t the first time something like this has happened.

"That has been the site of numerous spills and other things that certainly are a violation of our rules,” said Mark Skinner with the Oklahoma Corporation Commission.

According to past incident reports from the OCC, the lease has been red tagged and remained shut down until it was brought to compliance multiple times.

"Spills do happen. When you look at a facility, what we look at is what is the facility's track record and, quite frankly, throughout this year, this site has been of major concern,” Skinner said.

The OCC is filing contempt against the operator in lieu of the latest incident.

"If there is a release or any other thing that requires an environmental remediation, the operator is responsible in cleaning that up in keeping with the time table at place. That has not happened,” Skinner said.

The site’s operator said he is looking at thousands of dollars in clean up and damages.