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Diesel spill ties up I-5 traffic

Collision also damages freeway guardrail

Posted: June 18, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Updated: June 18, 2012 1:55 a.m.

An early morning traffic collision on Interstate 5 on Sunday caused a "minor" diesel fuel spill and prompted the brief closure of southbound lanes near Calgrove Boulevard, an officer with the California Highway Patrol said.

At 5:17 a.m., CHP received a call about a traffic collision involving a big rig and a black Honda Accord in the southbound lanes of the interstate just south of Calgrove at a curve.

The big rig slammed into the metal guardrail on the right shoulder, crumpling the protective barrier and spilling between 30 and 40 gallons of diesel fuel, according to officials.

"It was minor injuries and a minor spill with negative haz mat impact," said CHP Officer John Noland, referring to diesel as a hazardous material. "The spill was contained to the roadway."

The hazardous materials unit of the Los Angeles County Fire Department was dispatched to the scene, said department Dispatch Supervisor Ray Dong.

"The fuel spilled was between 30 and 40 gallons, and it was contained," he said.

CHP officers arriving at the scene noticed that airbags in the car had been deployed in the collision and found a gas tank in one of the lanes.

Within 10 minutes of the collision, spilled fuel was noticed by CHP officers to be across all lanes of the interstate.

Traffic was immediately diverted off of the interstate at Calgrove and onto The Old Road.

Hydro wires were also downed in the crash which prompted Southern California Edison to respond to the collision scene as well.

At about 7 a.m., traffic was allowed back onto the southbound interstate.

A crumpled stretch of guardrail, pushed in by the crash and now lined with orange traffic cones, is expected to be repaired by Caltrans on Monday, Noland said.

When asked if CHP were questioning a parolee in relation to the crash, Noland said only that the crash was under investigation.




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