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TCEQ Confident It Will Find Source Of Museum Reach Oil Spill

Several agencies are now investigating an oil spill that flowed into the San Antonio River at 10th Street last weekend.

So much rain came down over the weekend and Monday that it is difficult for the agencies to measure the amount of oil that washed down Avenue B to 10th Street, over the berms, through the grass, and into the river.

Tests by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality have determined that the spill was petroleum oil.

San Antonio River Authority Spokesperson Rosanne Hughes said there was quite a bit of damage to the vegetation above the river trail, but not to the trail itself.

"TCEQ and SARA will share the costs of remediation and restoration," Hughes said. "The cost is still unknown, but the initial testing is showing petroleum oil."

Hughes said the source of the spill is undetermined at this time, but TCEQ is confident its investigation will yield results.

"Well, fortunately TCEQ recognizes that the situation is serious enough to be involved, and also our environmental investigator is on it. So we’re in the midst of the investigative process right now," she said.

The odor of petroleum still lingered along the river Friday. Hughes said silt fencing is being installed in the next few days to protect the river from any further damage, and the trail will remain open to pedestrians and cyclists until reconstruction begins.

Eileen Pace is a veteran radio and print journalist with a long history of investigative and feature reporting in San Antonio and Houston, earning more than 50 awards for investigative reporting, documentaries, long-form series, features, sports stories, outstanding anchoring and best use of sound.