ST. MARYS — St. Marys residents who happened to be near the St. Marys River Thursday need not fear that an apocalyptic event was taking place.
St. Marys Safety-Service Director Greg Foxhoven reported that an industrial equipment failure at a business on McKinley Road led to about 55 gallons of food-grade red dye being dumped into the city’s wastewater system. The water was then discharged into the river, as all finished water is that leaves the facility. The dye turned a portion of the river red. Foxhoven did not release the name of the industry.
Foxhoven said the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency and the Auglaize EMA were contacted. The city was told that there was not any environmental impact, he said.
Foxhoven said the dye basically amounted to being “food coloring.” It was able to pass through undetected and into the river, not triggering any alerts.
Foxhoven said the incident remains under investigation and has been documented. He said city officials would work closely with the EPA to make sure another comparable incident does not take place in the future.