HEBER CITY — State wildlife officials are asking for the public’s help in trying to figure out who illegally dumped about 150 gallons of oil in a wildlife management area near where a large wildfire burned in 2018.
Officials from the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources said 20 5-gallon buckets and one 50-gallon drum filled with oil were found at Wildcat Wildlife Management Area and within 100 yards of a water source that drains into the Currant Creek watershed.
DWR spokeswoman Faith Heaton Jolley said the oil discovery was reported on Nov. 8, but it’s unclear how long the buckets were there before they were found. Most of the oil was still contained in the buckets, according to the agency.
Wildcat Wildlife Management Area is located east of Strawberry Reservoir and south of U.S. Highway 40 in eastern Wasatch County. It’s also in the area where the Dollar Ridge Fire burned close to 70,000 acres last year. In fact, officials said the management area is still recovering from the fire.
Seeds were scattered in fall 2018 to about 13,000 acres of the scorched land to help rehabilitate the land. In July this year, wildlife officials said that process was going well at the time.
Anyone with information about the oil found at the management site is encouraged to call the division hotline at 1-800-662-3337. The agency said requests for confidentiality can be honored and rewards are available for anyone who provides information that leads to successful prosecution.