Debris mistaken for tar found in Arkansas River

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Updated: 10/03/2012 7:04 pm Published: 10/03/2012 6:38 pm

A number of people are wondering, what's that "black gunk" along the Arkansas River in Muskogee.
It turns out it's coming from the Resurfacing project being done on the Highway 69 Bridge over the river.

"You can clearly see the asphalt and tar everywhere," said Quinton Rouse

He showed FOX23’s Dontaye Carter where the asphalt was along the trail to the Arkansas River under the bridge.

A veteran Oklahoma Department of Transportation worker says they cut holes in to the wall of the bridge to allow water to drain. But as they laid down 750 tons of asphalt it has fallen through the holes as well.

Rouse says his main concern is the effect the Asphalt could have on the environment.

"I fish here and I like to eat the fish that I catch,” said Rouse.

And if it's in the water, he worries what that could be doing to the fish.

"I don't think I'll eat anything out of this river anymore," said Rouse.

FOX23 took those concerns to the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality.  Officials say  solidified asphalt is not regulated and is not a concern in this case. 

ODOT says any mess they've made while repairing this bridge they will clean up as soon as the work is complete.

The project is scheduled to be complete in two weeks.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

debbntulsa - 10/3/2012 10:45 PM
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they’ll clean it up.....? right.....just like they cleaned up all the crap in the Arkansas river from when they did the low water dams eons ago. big hunks of concrete & who knows what else in the water/sand around the concrete boat ramp on the east side of the river, near 21st.
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