N.H. AG settles with oil distributor

By Bryan Cohen | Mar 18, 2013

CONCORD, N.H. (Legal Newsline) - New Hampshire Attorney General Michael Delaney and Department of Environmental Services Commissioner Thomas Burack announced the approval of a $41,615 settlement Friday with an oil distributor to resolve allegations of an oil spill.

The Rockingham Superior Court approved the settlement on Friday between the state and Sprague Operating Resources LLC to resolve allegations that Sprague released fuel oil at its River Road terminal in Newington and failed to comply with several state rules related to maintenance and inspection of aboveground petroleum storage tank systems.

On June 16, 2011, a small leak developed on a No. 6 fuel oil pipeline located above the bank of the Piscataqua River. Sprague employees stopped the leak after approximately 168 gallons of oil were released. The leak occurred, in part, as a result of corrosion on a section of half-inch steel expansion relief piping that was later replaced.

Sprague and federal and state authorities acted promptly to largely contain and clean up the spill.

Under the terms of the settlement, Sprague will pay $30,000 in civil penalties and $11,615 to reimburse the state for response costs. Sprague already performed an appropriate spill response and remedied the source of the leak. The settlement also requires Sprague to upgrade and/or replace and coat most of the No. 6 fuel oil pipeline at the River Road terminal to prevent the possibility of future leaks.

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