Columbia Parks and Recreation staff was made aware on July 13, that a liquid chlorine leak had occurred that day at the Albert-Oakland Family Aquatic Center, 1900 Blue Ridge Road. This leak migrated into nearby Bear Creek, where staff observed several dead and distressed minnows and gizzard shad.
Staff immediately went to the pool with officials from Columbia Fire Department and could not find a leak. After several days of searching for the leak, staff located an old drain plug as the source of the leak.The plug had failed, which allowed any pool water that spilled into the pump room to enter into the collection pit and into the creek. This explains why the leak was intermittent and difficult to trace.
The plug has since been replaced and staff has tested it to make sure no chlorinated water can escape. Steps are being taken by Parks staff to remove the old drain line or divert the line to sanitary sewer so that any potential future failures will not enter the creek.
Parks staff is currently working with staff from the Missouri Department of Natural Resources and a final report regarding the incident will be provided to the City of Columbia at a later date.