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Lynchburg Company Pays Heavy Fine after Truck Accident Spills Fuel

Posted on Nov 13, 2012

A Virginia truck company will pay a substantial fine to the Department of Environmental Quality following a fatal truck accident that spilled thousands of gallons of fuel.

According to local news sources, the Virginia truck accident took place on May 28, 2012, in Bedford County as a trucker was driving on U.S. 460 near Montvale. The commercial tanker truck crash spilled an estimated 7,000 gallons of fuel onto the road, which contaminated the surrounding soil, as well as the nearby Goose Creek.

It took four months following the 18-wheeler crash for crews to clean up the environmental damage, which they did by removing 5,000 tons of fuel-tainted soil from the area.

The Lynchburg trucking company that owned the truck, Watts Petroleum, was fined $43,613 for the fuel spill caused by the wreck. In the ensuing settlement, the trucking company agreed to pay $16,616 within the next 30 days. The remainder of the fine will be paid in other ways: the company will help with other cleanup efforts, monitor nearby water sources for contamination, and buy needed equipment for the Bedford County Fire & Rescue Department.

According to Bedford County authorities and Virginia State Police, the truck accident occurred just after eight in the evening between Montvale and Bedford City. Fifty homes were evacuated after the crash, and a HAZMAT team was called to the scene. The truck allegedly lost control on an S-curve and ran off of the road.

Truck driver Allen Henry of Lynchburg was killed in the accident. He was pulled from the cab of the truck by emergency crews and died at the scene of the crash. He was not wearing a seat belt.

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