Gasoline spill on city’s west side mobilizes response personnel

The pumps at Krist Oil Co., located at 1110 Lincoln Ave., Marquette, are idle while employees await word to turn them back on following a gas leak at the station at about 4:25 p.m. Sunday. Emergency crews responded and cleaned up the spill, officials said. (Journal photo by Corey Kelly)

MARQUETTE — A gasoline leak was reported at the Krist Oil Co. gas station located at 1110 Lincoln Ave., Marquette, around 4:25 p.m. Sunday.

As the Marquette City Fire Department arrived at the scene, responders found a large amount of gas was covering the 1000 block of West College Avenue.

The leak occurred when the station was being refueled by a fuel truck, when a large amount of gas began free-flowing out of the storage tank and on to the surrounding area, according to a press release from the fire department.

Sand hauled to the scene by the city’s public works department was used to absorb the spill, as the gas was pooling in the street on the 1000 block of West College Avenue.

Firefighters worked to secure the area by closing the 1000 block of West College Avenue, as well as other streets in the area surrounding the spill. They also evacuated buildings on the 1000 block of West College Avenue.

“We just had some air quality concerns,” Lt. Jeff Haile of the fire department said.

Haile said responders took ambient air readings and underground readings throughout the incident to monitor the air quality in the area. While they did not observe a specific high reading in the area, Haile said the area was evacuated because there was a potential for poor air quality related to the incident.

The fire department notified residents around 8:30 p.m. Sunday, roughly four hours after the incident, that the air quality was no longer a concern and that it was safe to return to their homes at that time. No injuries were reported in relation to the gas leak.

The cleanup of the gas leak was completed at 4:30 this morning, and the gas station store is now open, but the gas pumps remain off at this time.

Marquette city police said all roads in the area are now open, as is Marquette Senior High School.

Officials said the cause of the spill remains unknown and it is difficult at this time to estimate the actual volume of gasoline that was lost.

The fire department was assisted on the scene by the city’s public works department, Marquette County Rescue Unit 131, as well as agents from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.