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Pipeline spills more than 4,000 gallons of oil into Highland creek

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HIGHLAND, IL (KTVI) –Big concerns continue after an oil leak Friday near Highland, Illinois, not far from the Madison and Bond County line. Residents worry the oil may contaminate their water supply.

Crews have a lot of work to do after more than 4,000 gallons of oil leaked out of this Plains Pipeline Company Pumping Station in to a nearby ditch.  Trouble is, that ditch leads to a creek, which goes to Silver Lake, and that's where the water for Highland comes from.

The pipeline runs from Patoka, Illinois to Wood River.

Crews have been working to boom the spilled oil in place. That will keep any additional oil out of the town’s water supply and allow it be cleaned up.  Plains Pipeline  officals say a local resident notified the company of the oil spill at 7:45 am Friday, and that works remotly monitoring the pipeline shut it down with in two minutes.

A news conference is expected sometime Saturday morning.

Crews from a variety of public safety agencies are working to clean up the mess and minimize the damage.

The city of Highland released a written statement assuring residents there is no sign any of the oil has gotten into Silver Lake and that the water supply has not been affected by the leak. As a precaution, they are not allowing any recreational use of the lake, but Silver Lake Park is open.

But residents are a little nervous about where this oil could end up

Tanya Rommerskirchen told FOX 2’s Paul Schankman, “Well, it is a little unnerving since it goes into the water system that we are drinking. So we are now drinking bottled water just to be cautious.”

To assure the safety of the water supply, Highland and a third party experts overseen by the EPA have instituted additional monitoring and testing of the city’s water supply.