Just before noon Wednesday, Sacramento firefighters were dispatched to the 700 block of Merchant Street. Callers reported an unknown substance inside a storm drain outside an apartment building.

When crews arrived, they found the oil-like substance leaking into the drainage system from the nearby apartment building.

A test of the substance determined it to be heating oil.

According to a fire department spokesperson, the old apartment building (appearing to be built in 1915) had a retired furnace in the basement that used to heat the building. The furnace hadn't been used in years, and the heating oil used in the furnace was left sitting all these years. A leak started in the heating oil storage, causing the oil to get into a local storm drain.

A private contractor was called to the scene to safely dispose of the heating oil after the fire department was able to successfully stop and contain the leak.

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