Dead Fish Turning Up at Oil Spill Site

Dead fish are starting to turn up at the site of that 10,000 gallon oil spill at Harris Creek in Smith County.

A Texas Parks and Wildlife biologist investigated the spill Wednesday night, reporting at least five dead fish.

Even so, he labels the oil leak at Palrich Oil Company as moderate.

Crews will be working around the clock to pump out the crude oil. That's expected to take several weeks.

Early detection of the spill is credited with stopping the oil from travelling farther down the creek into local water supplies.

"Throughout the whole clean up process there are chances of other fish and more amphibians dying," says Adam Whisenant, Texas Parks and Wildlife regional biologist. "But I believe there are still fish alive under the oil and the water, there's pools, but there's not a lot you can do about that because you're going to have to clean it up."

Clean up will cost 300-thousand dollars instead of the 100-thousand originally projected. Investigators believe vandals opened the spickets on the crude tanks, but since there have been no arrests, Palrich is having to soak up that cost.