New Mexico agencies monitor spill in Black River

New Mexico

CARLSBAD, N.M. (KRQE) – The New Mexico Departments of the Environment, Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources and New Mexico Department of Game and Fish are investigating a spill in the Black River between Malaga and Loving.

A nearby landowner notified the state on Monday of an accidental release of drilling mud into the river that took place about a half-mile west of Highway 285. The borehole was immediately cased by the parties, however, the release has caused the river to be cloudy.

NMED recommends that those in the area, including pets and livestock, limit their contact to the river in the areas where there the disturbance can be seen in the water. State agencies report NMDGF has conducted a water chemistry panel in the affected area of the river and observed that pH, dissolved oxygen, temperature, and conductivity were within expected ranges under normal river conditions.

The company Matador Resources that works in the area is also collecting water samples which are pending analysis. State personnel are currently at the site evaluating aquatic life and at this time, no fish kills have been observed.

State agencies will require Matador Resources to provide a remedy to the situation according to state regulations and will be held responsible for any state violations.

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