A tanker truck carrying more than 10,000 gallons of fuel overturned Sunday on Highway 22 about 60 miles east of Salem, spilling more than half of its load. An unknown amount was released into the North Santiam River, which provides drinking water for nearby communities and the city of Salem.
A hazardous materials team and emergency cleanup crew from Oregon Department of Environmental Quality were on the scene to pump remaining fuel out of the truck and to prevent more fuel from entering the river. The highway remains closed in both directions at milepost 63 as crews work to contain the site. The Oregon Department of Transportation advises motorists to avoid the area and find alternate routes until further notice.
According to reports the truck, owned by Space Age Fuel, was carrying a variety of fuels in two tanks. The trailer tank held 6,500 gallons of gasoline which has been released and the truck tank held 4,100 gallons of diesel. (Corrected to reflect vehicle and fuel handling.)
Preliminary indications are that all 6,500 gallons of the gasoline was spilled.
Update: Crews recovered about 2,830 gallons of diesel by Sunday evening.
Fuel from the trailer tank was released into a roadside ditch and some seeped into the river.
Health officials are notifying downstream drinking water system providers of the spill.
Crews will continue to evaluate the extent of the spill and determine cleanup options.
Harry Esteve, DEQ, 503-951-3856
Lou Torres, ODOT, 503-559-7118