Cleanup Continues After ‘Mystery Oil Spill’ on Bubbly Creek

Workers from the Environmental Protection Agency respond to an oil spill Oct. 26 at a fork of the Chicago River known as Bubbly Creek. (EPA) Workers from the Environmental Protection Agency respond to an oil spill Oct. 26 at a fork of the Chicago River known as Bubbly Creek. (EPA)

Cleanup activities are expected to continue this the week after an oil spill Thursday along the south fork of the South Branch of the Chicago River known as Bubbly Creek.

Staff from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency responded Oct. 26 to an oil discharge along a 1.5-mile section of the waterway. Crews have secured the affected area of the river with containment booms, but the source of the oil spill is unknown, according to the EPA’s website.

The EPA said it did not know how long the cleanup would last.

The spill resulted in the closure of the boat dock at Chicago Park District’s Park No. 571, which remains out of service. The U.S. Coast Guard has also closed off access to Bubbly Creek.

Video: Cleanup efforts underway Saturday at Bubbly Creek. (Credit: Oliver Czuma)

According to the EPA, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service staff are working with the EPA to retrieve killed and injured wildlife. Oiled birds that are alive will be transferred to wildlife rehabilitation centers for care, the agency said.

Contact Alex Ruppenthal: @arupp aruppenthal@wttw.com | (773) 509-5623


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