What Was the Oil Drum Doing on East 204th Street?

What Was the Oil Drum Doing on East 204th Street (Picture)
THIS YELLOW DRUM (pictured) was left at the northwest corner of East 204th Street and Perry Avenue for at least two weeks.
Photo by David Cruz

A salvage drum filled with diesel fuel has finally been collected from the northwest corner of East 204th Street and Perry Avenue after languishing there for several weeks. Residents worried about potential safety risks, including the possibility that it would explode.

“I just want everyone to be safe,” said one resident, who first reported the incident to the Norwood News. “That’s basically it.”

The resident, who asked to remain anonymous, said, “I live in the area and walk past the area every day and all of a sudden I see this big yellow drum there. Like, what is this? So I looked on the top of it and I saw a note dated January 9, give them time to collect it. I checked a couple of days later on the 14th. Still here.”

The FDNY first placed the salvage drum on the northwest corner of 204th Street and Perry Avenue after an accident caused a fuel spill in the area. The tank was originally left outside Foodtown Supermarket one block up from its current location but later moved. A spokesperson for the FDNY said this was “standard procedure.”

Tony Enamorado, who works at Jerry’s Hardware Store across the street, saw the accident. “It was snowing. It was snowing a lot. The truck was going up the hill. The car was coming down and it looked like it braked but it spun. Boom! Right into the gas tank.”

Tony feared what would happen if the tank ignited. “If that blows up, all the glass, my glass, the supermarket glass, will break because it’s a heavy explosion.”

Adanna Roberts, a spokesperson for the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), said the DEC runs a Spill Fund “Drum Run” program to retrieve stray waste petroleum drums left on the streets. She alerted Norwood News when the tank was finally removed on Jan. 24.

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