Porter Beach Access at Indiana Dunes
Porter Beach Access at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore

NPS Photo/JManuszack

Oil spills are something that you never want to happen at your park! But being prepared with a plan in case it does happen is one way to minimize further damage.

One way we prepare for oil spills is by assessing a park’s resources (natural/cultural facilities) to see what is most vulnerable to oil spills and what resources are most sensitive to the effects of hazardous material. Once the most vulnerable sites are identified, the NPS can prioritize those areas and focus their response efforts on those sensitive sites, since protecting every location all at the same time might not be possible.

Several factors are involved in determining the vulnerability of a location:

  • Proximity to major shipping / container ports or channels

  • Amount of boat traffic on nearby waterways, currents, river and tidal flows

  • Height of tides

  • Inclement weather conditions that affect visibility

  • Types or vessels or fuel commonly used by boats in the area

  • Inland focus annexes

Several park units have completed a full response plan. Contact the NPS the Spill Response Coordinator to learn how to prepare your park unit for a possible spill.

Last updated: June 30, 2017


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