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County Cautions Residents to Avoid Four Mile Run

Arlington County is warning residents to avoid human or pet contact with the water from Four Mile Run. A petroleum product has reportedly been found in the water.

From a county news release:

Arlington County today advised residents to avoid the water in Four Mile Run, downstream from highway 395 to the Potomac River.

The County issued the warning after the Arlington County Fire Department discovered the petroleum release, from an unknown source, at about 8 a.m. Thursday morning. ACFD was responding to a business owner’s report of a “fuel odor” in Four Mile Run stream. County staff are investigating the source of the release and have placed booms in the stream to collect the petroleum.

To eliminate the risk of exposure to the petroleum, until further notice, residents should:

  • Stay away from the affected waters
  • Keep your pets away
  • Avoid recreational use of Four Mile Run downstream of 395
  • Do not fish, wade or swim in the stream

The advisory to avoid all contact is an extra precaution to allow the effect of the discharge to be diminished by natural flushing of the stream.

NOTE: Residents are reminded that stream water can contain microorganisms that can make people sick, whether the stream is located in an urban area or in the middle of a forest. Even after the discharge is naturally flushed from the stream, the County’s normal precautions for safe use of streams apply. You can find information and safety tips on Arlington streams, including information on reporting stream pollution incidents, on the Department of Environmental Service website.

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