EWEB 2023 year in review
In 2023, EWEB invested in our community with grants, rebates and an array of other programs and measures aimed at fulfiling our core values of safety, reliability, affordability, environmental responsibility and community/culture.Find Out More
EWEB Recognized with Excellence in Communications Awards from American Public Power Association
We are proud to have been recognized with two Excellence in Public Power Communications Awards for 2023 from the American Public Power Association (APPA).Find Out More
Let's talk turkey. If a disaster strikes, is your family ready?
Many of us avoid discussing politics over the dinner table in the spirit of family peace and harmony. But here's a topic that can bring everyone together: emergency preparedness.Find Out More
EWEB To Hold First of Two Public Hearings on Proposed 2024 Budget and Prices
At the Nov. 7 Board of Commissioners meeting, EWEB staff will present a proposed budget that includes rate increases necessary to support utility operations and make needed infrastructure investments.Find Out More
Your EWEB Rates at Work: Investing Today for a Resilient Tomorrow
For more than a century, EWEB has planned, built, and maintained the systems that deliver safe, reliable, and environmentally responsible power and water to Eugene homes and businesses.Find Out More
Public Power Week Poster Contest Winners 2023
The results are in! View the winning posters from EWEB's 2023 Public Power Week Poster Contest.Find Out More
EWEB’s water infrastructure projects designed for reliability during major disasters
As communities nationwide Imagine a Day Without Water, EWEB strives to ensure such a day never happens.Find Out More
Fall is the perfect time to prepare for winter storm season
Winter is coming, which increases the likelihood of storm-related power outages. It's important to be prepared, and there are simple actions you can take right now.Find Out More
EWEB lead annual "Spill Drill"
EWEB coordinates drill as part of protecting Eugene’s drinking waterFind Out More
Public Power Week Poster Contest 2023
It’s that time of year again! October 1-7 is Public Power Week. To celebrate, EWEB is holding our annual poster contest for fifth graders in our service area. Help us pick the winners.Find Out More
Salmon Return to Finn Rock Reach
Finn Rock Reach and other restoration projects throughout the Middle McKenzie provide conditions to help young fish survive to adulthood.Find Out More
EWEB programs reflect community values
EWEB is here to serve our customer-owners and provides programs that reflect the values of our community.Find Out More
EWEB Prepares for the Annual Observance of "Imagine a Day Without Water"
Water infrastructure is essential, invaluable, and in need of continuous investment. Read how EWEB's Staff and Board of Commissioners are working to safeguard Eugene's water future.Find Out More
National Preparedness Month: Older adults take control in 1, 2, 3
We know older adults can face greater risks when it comes to the extreme weather events and emergencies we face, especially if they are living alone, are low-income, have a disability, depend on electricity for medical needs, or live in rural areas.Find Out More
Women in STEM: EWEB Engineer Laura Ohman's second degree brings a lifetime of benefits
EWEB Engineer Laura Ohman shares how getting her second degree was one of the most difficult and rewarding things she's ever accomplished.Find Out More
- Show More
EWEB Leads "Spill Drill" to Practice HazMat Response on McKenzie River
October 20, 2021
EWEB led multiple first responder and emergency management organizations in a drill last week simulating an oil spill on the McKenzie River.
Participants of the McKenzie Watershed Emergency Response System (MWERS) practiced containing a fictitious diesel spill using a boom system they deployed across the river at Hendrick's Bridge County Park.
Watch a video of the MWERS Team in action: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nB3-9L1h4xg
EWEB and the McKenzie Fire & Rescue set up MWERS in the early 2000s to be able to minimize the spread of hazardous materials that could contaminate the McKenzie River after vehicle accidents on Highway 126 or other incidents. Once a spill is reported, the GIS-based MWERS program sends an alert to hundreds of responders with geographic information about the location of the spill and suggested containment strategies and locations to implement them.In the case of this simulation, the MWERS team prepared to contain thousands of gallons of diesel that hypothetically spilled at milepost 30 on Highway 126. The team deployed one of four hazardous response trailers that are staged throughout the watershed and would have five to six hours to set up the containment boom before the current would have carried the oil downstream to Hendrick's Bridge Park.
The team stretched the floating containment booms across the river with a rope system. The booms funnel the oil toward the bank, where a skimmer system picks up the oil to be dredged out of the river before it reaches the intake at the Hayden Bridge Drinking Water Treatment Facility.
Treatment Operators at Hayden Bridge also activated an Incident Command System (ICS) and shut down the treatment plant for several hours to practice running the facility during an oil spill. Distribution Operations used a table top exercise to discuss how they could accept the rapid increase of flow prior to the plume reaching Hayden Bridge and then isolate areas of distribution in preparation for curtailment after plant shutdown.
EWEB's Watershed Restoration Program Manager, Karl Morgenstern, said that the increased erosion and landslide risk from the area burned by the Holiday Farm Fire may cause more opportunities for vehicle accidents this winter.
He said the opportunities to practice help ensure that the response is safe, efficient, and effective when a real disaster strikes.
"What we learned from the Holiday Farm Fire, is the more you do this up front, the easier it is when there's a disaster or a spill. Because you know each other, you know your capabilities, and you can come together as a team and work together efficiently," Morgenstern said. "The more foundation you lay down the better our response is going to be to protect our drinking water."