Home News Jim Beam Fire and Leak Update, Kentucky River Fish Dead and Dying

Jim Beam Fire and Leak Update, Kentucky River Fish Dead and Dying


Kentucky – On July 2 a fire consumed two building on the Jim Beam property, those buildings housed 45,000 barrels of whiskey or around six million gallons of bourbon. The runoff of that fire has contaminated the Kentucky River that is located close to the warehouse.

Due to this massive runoff officials do expect that a significant number of fish will die due to how many gallons of the product has run into the river.

Fire Department in Kentucky let the fire burn off the alcohol rather than extinguishing the fire and let the fire burn for days at the warehouse, limiting the contamination.

A statement from the Fish and Game Wildlife department tells about the newest conditions of the situation.

Here is Sunday’s update on the Jim Beam fire and fishkill in the Kentucky River:
1) The alcohol plume on the Kentucky River is approximately 23 miles long. The leading edge of the plume is located between Owenton and Carrollton.
2) Unified command, Franklin County EM, Owen County EM, KDEP, U.S. EPA, and Beam Suntory representatives, in a coordinated effort, will be using a combination of water sampling and water field screening instruments to get real-time results of water quality on the river today. These efforts will help determine the location of the leading edge and length of the plume.
3) Aeration of the Kentucky River continues in an attempt to increase the low dissolved oxygen levels in the water.
4) The warehouse fire is out and currently, there is a very limited impact on Glenns Creek from the facility. The on-site stormwater drainage system is being evaluated in an attempt to recover any product or impacted water that may remain within the system. Cleanup at the warehouse site continues.
5) The Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources is on the river again today to continue wildlife assessments and fish kill count. Results are pending.
6) We continue to see dead and dying fish. People using the Kentucky River in the area of the plume will likely see and smell dead fish.
7) The plume is expected to reach the Ohio River sometime very early Monday morning. We expect the plume to dissipate quickly at it enters the much, much larger body of water but there could be some impact to aquatic life immediately where the two rivers meet.
8) Water quality assessments are scheduled for tomorrow.