South Portland beach closed due to oil spill

Willard Beach in South Portland was closed Wednesday due to an oil spill, according to the Maine Department of Environmental Protection.

An oily residue on the water was first noticed around a stormwater discharge around 7 p.m. Tuesday evening.

The Maine DEP, along with the US Coast Guard and the City of Portland have identified the source of the spill and do not believe the source will continue to flow into the body of water.

Clean Harbors Environmental Services is working to clean up the oil spill. This includes collecting any contaminated algae in the area, as well as removing any oil residue that is in the stormwater drainage system to prevent further spillage into the water near Willard Beach.

Although people can smell the residual oil, the spill poses no threat to public health, officials said.

Willard Beach will remain closed on Wednesday and city officials will determine when to reopen the beach as clean-up efforts progress.

Leela Stockley is a University of Maine alumnus. She grew up in northern Maine and loves her cat Wesley and staying active in Maine outdoors. More by Leela Stockley

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Sandy A. Greer

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