Herbicide spill

A herbicide spill by a local farmer in late June has some Napoleon residents worried about their grass returning, while city officials are concerned it may damage newly-laid pavement in the downtown area. Above, Napoleon crews apply sand to the spill, which extended from the intersection at Appian and Maumee avenues down Perry Street to Oakwood Avenue and then American Road.

A chemical spill in Napoleon involving a herbicide has some residents concerned about their grass, while city officials are keeping an eye on relatively new pavement.

The spill occurred late in June and was caused by a farmer transporting equipment. County officials said a pump broke, which caused the herbicide to spray along the side of the road.

The spill stretched from the intersection of Maumee and Appian avenues to nearly American Road.

“Our concern is the chemical contains hyrdrocarbons, which are also in gasoline, diesel fuel and asphalt, and when it mixes with asphalt it can be a bad result,” said Napoleon Public Works Director Chad Lulfs. “It eats up the liquid asphalt.”

The area of particular concern is the downtown area, which was recently paved over a two-year period.

“We’re hoping it won’t be a problem, but it will take time to find out,” Lulfs said. “We’re keeping an eye it.”

Henry County Emergency Management Agency Deputy Director Nick Nye said several residents along Oakwood Avenue have also expressed concern as to whether grass killed along the street due to the spill will grow back.

Nye said it would, but likely will take some time. He also said a bill has been sent to the farmer involved in the spill to recoup costs of the cleanup, which included the purchase of sand to put down on the spill, as well as reimbursing the city for the time of city crews to apply the sand.

Email comments to briank@northwestsignal.net

I started at the Northwest Signal in 1994 and became editor in 2004. I graduated from Bowling Green State University in 1994.

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