News Release

Chemical Spill Closes Portions of National Park

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Date: August 16, 2019

The National Park Service has closed the Portage Lakefront and Riverwalk beach area and waters out to 300 feet, at Indiana Dunes National Park due to an observed fish kill caused by the spill of an undetermined substance into the East Branch of the Little Calumet River on August 14. While the beach area at Portage Lakefront and portions of the Little Calumet River (between Highway 149 to Highway 249) have been closed, the trails in that area remain open to the public.

Until the direct cause of this fish kill has been determined the impacted waters will remain closed and residents are advised to avoid eating fish in the affected areas. The National Park Service has staff on scene and is continuing to closely monitor the situation and will provide an update as more information is available.

Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) is the lead agency on this incident. Media questions as to the nature and potential harmful effects of the chemical spill should be emailed to the IDEM Media Department. Questions on local drinking water quality should be referred to the individual water provider. Information on closures within Indiana Dunes National Park should be directed to the national park’s information desk line at 219-395-1882. 

Indiana Dunes National Park is located in Northwest Indiana, the park includes 15 miles of Lake Michigan shoreline and 15,000 acres of biodiverse beaches, woods, prairies, and marshes. Up to 2 million visitors come to the Indiana Dunes each year. Check our Facebook page at

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

1100 North Mineral Springs Road
Porter, IN 46304


219 395-1882
Indiana Dunes Visitor Center phone number.

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