NILES - The cleanup effort on the Mahoning River is nearly complete.
"I'm willing to bet after the rain we got the other night, there's probably nothing left," Jason DeLuca of Trumbull County HazMat said Friday.
By Monday, there were only a few spots of oil left on the river, and crews were out breaking up debris on the river to release any trapped oil, he said.
Cleanup began the afternoon of June 7 after a woman walking along the bike path here noticed a sheen on the water and called authorities.
At first, it was believed the sole source was a malfunctioning oil polishing system at the ArcelorMittal plant on Main Avenue in Warren Township. It was later learned that oil also was coming from a wastewater pond on the property.
Initial response to the spill brought out crews from numerous departments, including Trumbull County Emergency Management Agency, the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, Niles Fire Department and Weathersfield Fire Department. Crews used absorbent booms to trap the oil then vacuumed up the contaminant.
DeLuca said the OEPA removed the hard boom that had been directing the flow of oil to a gathering point along the river on either Thursday or Friday.
Mike Settles, OEPA spokesman, said it will be a while before the costs are tallied up for equipment and labor, but that beyond requesting reimbursement for that, ArcelorMittal will not be facing any charges. This is in part due to the incident being accidental and in part to the "wonderful" cooperation of the company and all the clean up crews, he said.
On Monday, ArcelorMittal officials said they were taking the matter "very seriously" and had been working with the agencies involved to address it.
In a written statement, the company confirmed it was notified on Friday "of an observed oil presence on the Mahoning River" and that "the company immediately conducted an inspection of all areas of the facility and identified and addressed the source of the release."
The OEPA said previously that it appeared that between 400 and 500 gallons of oil made its way along four to 4 1/2 miles of the waterway.