Oak Creek Power Plant's Neighbors Worry About Effects of Bluff Collapse
Caledonia residents say oil, fly ash can still be seen in Lake Michigan water.
Several Caledonia residents living near the We Energies power plant in Oak Creek said they are concerned with large amounts of oil and fly ash in the water after Monday's bluff collapse.
"It spread out in the water, and you can still see the fly ash," resident Renee Michna told the Caledonia Village Board Tuesday. "You can tell it’s jet black, and it's leaking out. And that's all heavy metals. It's going to affect our coastline and Wind Point's."
Marie Michna, who also lives near the plant, said she viewed Lake Michigan just after the bluff collapsed.
"The oil was floating right past me right along the coast," Marie said. "It would have reached Chicago tonight. I was looking at ... a big dark area. There was a small little boat, and the boom isn’t catching much of it. There's no way this will be able to contain it. I think they are just waiting for it to disperse in the water."
Caledonia Village President Ron Coutts said the village would be monitoring the situation.
"I know you want us to do something, but its up to DNR and the federal government," Coutts said.
We Energies spokesman Brian Manthey said Tuesday that crews are working on stabilizing the bluff and making that area safe, as well as containing the debris that fell into the lake as a result of the mudslide.
The DNR and Environmental Protection Agency have been called to the scene to assist We Energies, Manthey said.
But concerns like the ones voiced by Caledonia residents continue to linger. According to a report from Fox 6, an environmental group is worried about potentially hazardous coal ash getting into drinking water supplies.
There were also concerns Wednesday about rain hampering clean-up efforts.