STAFF WRITER JARED FIELDS
JOPPA — Eight 55-gallon barrels that were illegally dumped into the North Fork of the San Gabriel River were removed Aug. 29.
However, the $7,500 cleanup cost will be absorbed by Burnet County as law enforcement continue investigating the case and searching for a suspect.
The barrels were dumped earlier this month from a steep embankment behind Joppa Church.
Fort Worth-based TAS Environmental conducted the cleanup from an adjacent property. The company removed all the barrels as well as material in the riverbed and will properly dispose of the waste. Crews used a mini-excavator and drum strap in the removal process.
“The adjacent property owner was very gracious about letting us on his property,” said Burnet County Precinct 4 Constable Missy Bindseil.
The barrels contained a solid substance not believed to be toxic. Further tests are being done on collected samples.
The Burnet County Sheriff’s Office is still investigating the illegal dumping. Anyone with information regarding the barrels may contact Hill Country Crime Stoppers at (866) 756-8477 or hillcountryareacrimestoppers.com; Precinct 4 Constable Missy Bindseil’s office at (830) 798-3020; or the Burnet County Sheriff’s Office at (512) 756-8080.