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At Mayflower oil-spill site, mayor lauds cleanup progress

By Gavin Lesnick

This article was published September 30, 2013 at 11:05 a.m.

faulkner-county-judge-allen-dodson-left-and-mayflower-mayor-randy-holland-speak-monday-in-front-of-the-site-where-oil-spilled-from-a-pipeline-in-mayflower-about-six-months-ago-the-rupture-site-to-the-left-of-the-home-has-been-fenced-off

Faulkner County Judge Allen Dodson, left, and Mayflower Mayor Randy Holland speak Monday in front of the site where oil spilled from a pipeline in Mayflower about six months ago. The rupture site, to the left of the home, has been fenced off.

County judge, mayor return to oil spill site

The Faulkner County judge and the mayor of Mayflower returned to the site of an oil spill in Mayflower Monday to mark the roughly six-month anniversary of the rupture. (By Gavin Lesnick)
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MAYFLOWER — The mayor of Mayflower and the Faulkner County judge said Monday that they are pleased with the progress made after a pipeline ruptured underneath a neighborhood, spilling thousands of gallons of crude oil into the streets, drainage system and a cove of Lake Conway.

Speaking at the site of the ruptured Exxon Mobil Pegasus pipeline a day after the 6-month anniversary of the March 29 spill, Mayor Randy Holland said the cleanup efforts have been encouraging.

"It's been a long six months," Holland said, "but we are progressing and we are getting Mayflower back to where it needs to be."

Faulkner County Judge Allen Dodson called the progress "significant," noting the cove has largely been cleaned, the drainage system hasn't shown signs of oil for months and negotiations are ongoing with homeowners who either wish to sell their property to Exxon Mobil or to return to it.

"I'm comfortable saying we're pleased with the progress but we'll never be satisfied until the job is complete, we get the people back in their homes or the homes bought, or whatever the ultimate resolution is for each of the families and residents," Dodson said.

Twenty-two homes in the Northwoods Subdivision were evacuated and three that still have oil under them have still not been cleared for residents to return. Most of the evacuated families have chosen not to return even after being cleared to do so, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported Monday.

Exxon officials at the media briefing Monday said five homes have been purchased by the company so far and that about a dozen families are still receiving financial assistance to the cover costs of being displaced.

An estimated 210,000 gallons of oil spilled from the burst Pegasus pipeline, leading to a massive cleanup effort in the neighborhood and the cove, a marshy area about a mile away adjacent to Lake Conway.

The pipeline has not been restarted, and Exxon Mobil hasn't said when it will seek to bring it back online.

Comments on: At Mayflower oil-spill site, mayor lauds cleanup progress

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Displaying 1 - 3 of 3 total comments

NOTAGAIN says... September 30, 2013 at 11:40 a.m.

Where's Griffin to grandstand and stir the pot? Oh, shutting down the government.

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BeeJ says... September 30, 2013 at 11:52 a.m.

i just saw a video on facebook where a Hendrix professor dug a few inches into the sediment on the "lake side" and discovered a dark substance that smelled of oil.....will it ever really truly be cleaned up? Mayflower Girl

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3Generations says... September 30, 2013 at 12:43 p.m.

The company hasn't fixed the damage to Main St. yet. What do they say about that?

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