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Crews place boom to contain oil sheen on Columbia River

UPDATED: Sun., March 19, 2017, 9:32 p.m.

WENATCHEE – Crews have placed an oil absorbent boom on the Columbia River near Wenatchee to contain an oil-like substance that has gotten into the river.

The Department of Ecology said Sunday that crews have not been able to determine the source of the sheen since it was first spotted on the river Friday evening. A diesel odor was also reported in the area at the time.

State officials say so far it doesn’t appear that ducks, geese and other wildlife have been coated by the petroleum-like substance.

Several state and local agencies have responded. They’ve inspected nearby facilities but haven’t been able to find the source. Ecology spill responders have collected samples to try to identify it.

High winds and fast-moving water have posed safety concerns for response crews. An Ecology spokeswoman said a boom was deployed on the river early Sunday morning once conditions improved.

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