Residents near crude pipeline release ‘frustrated’ after homes coated in oily film

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OKLAHOMA CITY – Some residents living near a pipeline that spewed crude oil into the air Thursday afternoon say they’re “frustrated” after portions of their homes and property are now covered in an oily film.

“You can see the pipe up here on the roof, you can see the film all over the windows and it’s kind of, it’s an oily substance,” said Kevin Mashburn as he wiped his hand across his window.

Mashburn, who lives to the north of the pipeline release, said he came home to his outdoor furniture and windows covered in an oily residue.

“It is a mess,” he said. “I like a clean house and like to take care of my property and now it’s all over that.”

The Oklahoma City Fire Department and hazmat crews were called to an area near N.W. 169th and N. Pennsylvania Avenue at around 4:30 p.m. for reports of a yellow liquid shooting into the air near an oil and gas well site.

Pennsylvania Avenue was closed to traffic for a short period of time. Fire officials were initially concerned about the neighborhood to the north of the release, as high winds carried the oil in the air, however the neighborhood was not evacuated.

“When we arrived, we had obviously petroleum products spewing into the air from a ruptured pipeline,” said Oklahoma City Fire Department Acting Chief Derrick Kiel.

“There’s several companies that pipe product through this area, so we’re trying to determine whose pipeline it is.”

An Oklahoma Corporation Commission spokesman said Thursday evening that an estimated five to ten barrels of crude oil were lost from the pipeline and an investigation is underway.

Late Thursday evening, Sunoco Pipeline said in a statement to News 4 that it did have a small release of crude.

“The section of the line has been isolated and the area contained,” said company spokesperson Vicki Granado. “We are in the process of bringing the appropriate resources onsite to fully remediate the area and make repairs. Once that is complete the line will be returned to service.”

The crude oil release from Sunoco’s pipeline occurred in the area of a natural gas booster station operated by DCP Midstream. A spokesperson for the Colorado-based company said it’s assisting Sunoco with the cleanup effort.

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