By Teddye Snell
A hydraulic fluid spill at Northeastern State University Wednesday prompted a response from the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality, Tahlequah Fire Department and an emergency response unit.
University officials said an employee of Kone Elevator spilled the fluid from an elevator shaft sump pump in the University Center basement, which spilled into the stormwater drain. The drain flows into the Town Branch Creek, a tributary of the Illinois River, a federally designated protected stream.
Tahlequah Fire Department received the call at 10:05 a.m. Wednesday.
NSU officials said the spill was detected, contained and appropriate entities were notified. As of Wednesday evening, there were no reports of contamination to the common water supply.
“The university continues to work with local authorities to minimize exposure to the landscape and potential ecological impact with quick response and action,” said NSU Vice President of Operations Tim Foutch. “We have been very pleased with the rapid, professional assistance shown us with assessment and clean-up efforts.
Teddye Snell writes for the Tahlequah Daily Press.