Oil spill in Benque Viejo Del Carmen; the Mopan River possibly contaminated
Tonight, residents of Benque Viejo Del Carmen Town, Cayo District are furious over an oil spill that occurred over the holiday weekend. The Department of the Environment (DOE) has launched an investigation into the oil spill that affected Coffin Creek which leads into the Mopan River. The oil is believed to have drained into the waterway from a nearby damaged oil tank belonging to Westline Bus Company Limited. Mayor of Benque Viejo, Jorge Rosales, explained that the council was informed of the situation during a town council meeting held yesterday. The Mayor says that it was until this morning that personnel from the DOE went to the area and immediately made efforts to tackle the situation.
Jorge Rosales, Mayor of Benque Viejo Town: “This morning they appeared together with the FCD group, the Department of Environment, the gentleman from the environment came and they started to tackle the problem and they followed the problem to see where it was coming from and then we ended it to be with the company West Bus Line’s garage. It looks like they had some, they have a container that was full of wasted oil from the vehicles that they service. They had a container there but the container it looks like a branch broke down and it dealt directly to the container including the oils and the overflow of the oils carried these oils directly to the creek, with the runs of the rain and the draining of the water it went directly into the creek. While we are concerned about this the it’s the other states in this it will be they’re cleaning at the moment the same company who is responsibility of doing the cleanup of the oil together with the FCD and the department of the environment. The oils never went to the river because the amount of water running down, rushing down the river it’s not helping or not pulling the oils to the river. It was stagnant, it was very stagnant and they were able to be cleaned up quickly. What we are looking at this is that if this continues then some fines or summons will be brought or a fine or a heavy fine that people wouldn’t like and I’m trying to say this to the public but please be responsible of your work and the drainage system of oil that you have to be responsible because this would affect down the river and most of the people will be affected by these oils and I don’t know which kind of sicknesses and illness they would have.”