Jug of Motor Oil Thrown into Public Kiddie Pool in Turlock

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TURLOCK — Workers said they found a bottle of motor oil stuck in a public pool’s filter, forcing Turlock to shut down the pool Wednesday.

What was supposed to be a fun day at the pool ended in disappointment for Jessica Bilyeu. She brought her kids to Columbia Pool in Turlock and was surprised to find out the pool was closed.

“It’s a bummer. It’s a bummer because these kids have been excited,” Bilyeu told FOX40.

The city shut the pool down after vandals threw a 5-quart jug of motor oil over the fence and into the kiddie pool sometime Tuesday night.

“That’s terrible. That takes away from our kids, especially me. I live in an apartment, so it’s not really much for them to do,” Bilyeu explained. “We don’t have a pool there or anything. So, it would have been nice to get them out and let them have a little bit of fun, but it didn’t happen that way.”

A hazmat team was called out but determined the oil was not hazardous. Turlock firefighters sopped up most of the oil with absorbent towels.

Maintenance workers were running the pool’s pumps with special chemicals Thursday to filter out the rest of the oil for the next several days.

Families were frustrated the act of vandalism forced the city to cancel the final week of swim lessons at the pool, which is also the last week the pool would have been open on weekdays.

“Why, why would you do that? It’s like the kids want to come swim and have a good time,” said Jennifer Edwards. “It’s hot outside. They shouldn’t be cooped up in the house and then we come here to see that there’s this.”

A “closed for maintenance” sign was posted at the entrance, turning families away.

The aquatics playground at the pool was not affected and will be open.

A county inspector will be out next week to determine if the pool is safe. If all goes well, the pool is expected to reopen Saturday, August 10.

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