Tank overflow causes fuel spill at McLouth
by Clarke Davis
A fuel tanker was filling a 6,000-gallon underground tank when it overflowed, according to Daryl Chess, Jefferson County Emergency Management director. The cause is still under investigation.
Local firefighters worked to try to contain the spill as best they could and Haz-Mat Response Inc., Olathe, was immediately called and is continuing the cleanup effort. Haz-Mat is a private firm on a state contract. “They’re the best in the business,” Chess said.
Chess said two families left their homes that night because of fumes and returned late the next morning. He said there was no threat of fire or explosion.
Sand berms were built and materials used to soak up the fuel were put down. Trucks began to vacuum up the spill and crews worked through the night.
Because of recent rains the ground didn’t soak up as much of the fuel as if it were dry, Chess said. Because of that maybe less soil will have to be removed in the cleanup process.
The initial call came in just before 11 p.m.
The BP station at 101 E. Lake Street is owned by Haag Oil Co., Topeka, and it was one of their tankers that was unloading the diesel.
McLouth firefighters were aided by departments from Oskaloosa and Leavenworth County, city of McLouth, sheriff’s department, Kansas Department of Emergency Management and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.
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