Ford’s Ohio Assembly Plant in Avon Lake, OH released an unknown quantity of a chemical rust-proofing material into nearby Lake Erie, The Morning Journal reports. The plant produces several models of the F-Series Super Duty, including F-650 and F-750 trucks, and F-350/450/550 Chassis Cabs, as well as the E-Series Cutaway and Stripped Chassis.
As much as 5,000 gallons of rust-proofing material was released from a 50,000-gallon storage tank and into a storm sewer, some of which then entered Lake Erie after a valve failure. Ford first became aware of the problem on June 24th, says Plant Manager Debbie Manzano, starting cleanup and containment procedures to try and get the spill under control. The following day, it was discovered that the rust-proofing material had spread beyond the Ohio Assembly Plant, at which point Ford alerted the authorities.
“We are obviously very committed to the community and we are working very closely with the Ohio EPA and the Coast Guards,” said Ms. Manzamo. “They are supporting us through this event and at this point we are making great progress.”
As of June 26th, Ford had contained the spill and begun cleaning the affected parts of the storm sewer. The Ohio EPA’s initial impact assessment showed no observable impact on fish or wildlife, and indicated that the spill was concentrated to a small area.