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Response to sunken barge found in Lake Erie is finished

Dec 17, 2015

TOLEDO, Ohio - The U.S. Coast Guard says crews have completed an effort to eliminate environmental threats from a sunken barge that apparently sat undiscovered in Lake Erie for nearly 80 years.

Salvage crews recently pumped hazardous, oil-based substances from the barge, though six of the eight tanks onboard were empty. The Coast Guard said Thursday that the mixture of cargo and water removed from the site near the U.S.-Canadian border totaled over 33,000 gallons.

A spokesman previously said officials can't determine whether substances in the other tanks spilled when the barge sank or trickled out later.

It's believed to be the Argo, which sank during a storm in 1937. Historical documents indicated it was transporting benzol and crude oil.

The wreckage was on a registry identifying serious pollution threats to U.S. waters.

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