A Texas oil company that spilled diesel and gasoline into the Cimarron River during a 2016 accident has agreed to pay $150,000 for restoration projects under a proposed settlement with the state.
Fronk Oil Co. will pay for restoration to benefit fish, habitat, soil, water and other natural resources that were harmed or lost when a company tanker overturned on U.S. 64 in icy conditions, spilling 1,100 gallons of unleaded gasoline and diesel fuel into the river near the Colin Neblett Wildlife Management Area.
“New Mexico residents were directly impacted by the contamination and this settlement will compensate for the losses they have suffered,” state Natural Resources Trustee Maggie Hart Stebbins said in a statement.
A 1.5-mile section of the river downstream from the release was closed to public access for several months. The cleanup cost Fronk about $300,000.
“Fronk Oil regrets the accident and has taken seriously our corporate responsibility to make things right,” Jerry D. Worsham II, the company’s attorney, said in a statement. “Fortunately, there does not appear to be any long-term impact.”
The public will get a chance to comment on both the proposed deal and the restoration plan.
The New Mexican