Members of the Penticton Fire Department scoop the last of what appeared to be a tar-like substance out of Penticton’s koi pond, located in the Penticton-Ikeda Japanese Garden (Jordyn Thomson - Western News)

Tar-like substance found in Penticton’s koi pond

The substance was found within the Penticton-Ikeda Japanese Garden along walkways and in the pond

A mysterious tar-like substance was found floating in Penticton’s koi pond located inside Penticton-Ikeda Japanese Garden on June 13.

The Penticton Fire Department responded around 11 a.m. to reports of a tar-like substance floating on the surface of the pond, as well as on parts of the sidewalk and pathway near the pond. According to Capt. Graham Gowe, the substance was floating “on top of the water in one big mass.”

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“We think it’s some type of a tar-substance, with a petroleum base. It was sitting on top of the water in one big mass,” said Gowe. “We put in some booms and pads and we’ve been able to clean it all up quite easily. It was very thin film, almost like cellophane, so it would have broken up if it were left any longer.”

A tar-like substance was spotted within the Penticton-Ikeda Japanese Garden and on the surface of the garden’s koi pond. Members of the Penticton Fire Department quickly removed the substance from the water and said it is not toxic and did not harm the fish. (Jordyn Thomson – Western News)

His team was able to use pool skimmers to scoop out the substance and place it into plastic bags. Gowe said the substance will be properly disposed of from there.

“We’re very confident that it didn’t sink to the bottom of the water and that it didn’t get into the lake,” said Gowe. “The koi fish don’t seem to be attracted to it, which is good.”

Gowe said they are unsure just what the substance is or who might have dumped it there, but said it likely took place in the late hours on June 12 or early this morning. He said the substance is not toxic, but all fire personnel were donning gloves when using the skimmers to retrieve the remaining pieces of the substance.

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Jordyn Thomson | Reporter
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