If you were down in Giant Springs State Park on August 11, you might have noticed a number of workers and some long, orange tubes in the Missouri River. Don’t worry, it wasn’t a new species of giant orange snakes, it was just Calumet Montana Refining conducting their annual river spill response drill.
Workers were down the park deploying what are called 'containment booms' in the Missouri river. The point of the drill was to allow team members to practice their response to a potential oil spill in the river, although Calumet says that this was not done in response to any known threat or occurrence.
“Calumet has great partnerships with local emergency response agencies through the LEPC (Local Emergency Planning Committees),” said Calumet Media Relations Manager Marlena Halko in a statement. “We work together to respond to situations that threaten the health or environment of our community. This training is one way we stay prepared to protect health and safety. This relationship is mutual, and Calumet stands ready to assist other agencies as well.”
According to Halko, workers chose the park as today's site because it is an environmentally-sensitive area which must be protected from potential oil pollution. More training will be done tomorrow (August 12).
Calumet says that the response‐readiness exercise is being conducted to comply with annual refresher training requirements established by the federal Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Transportation's Pipeline & Hazardous Materials Safety Administration.