An emulsion spill has resulted from a flow line leak in Billings County at a site operated by White Rock Oil and Gas, according to the North Dakota Department of Health.

Emulsion is a mixture of oil and salt water that comes out of the well prior to treatment. Flow lines transport emulsion from the wellhead to the treater unit. The spill occurred Saturday, about 16 miles northwest of Belfield.

Initial estimates indicate about 280 barrels of salt water and 20 barrels of oil were released. Oil and salt water flowed into a drainage area that leads to Franks Creek. Of this, an unknown amount of salt water flowed through the drainage and into Franks Creek.

A dam has been constructed across Franks Creek about 0.75 miles from the release point. Crude oil appears to be confined to the drainage. Personnel from the North Dakota Oil and Gas Division and the health department are at the site and will continue to monitor the investigation and remediation.

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