CLINTON — State workers responded to the weekend spill of dozens of gallons of diesel fuel in Clinton after a car crashed into a dump truck, piercing the truck’s 70-gallon fuel tank, police Chief Rusty Bell said Monday.

Teresa “Te” Kelley points Monday in the direction of a diesel fuel spill that occurred when a car reportedly ran a stop sign Sunday morning and hit a dump truck near the intersection of Battle Ridge, Hinckley and Tardiff roads in Clinton. Kelley lives near the accident scene and says she is concerned about the fuel leaking onto her property. Amy Calder/Morning Sentinel

“They put sand down on the road, they put absorption mats down after they put the sand down, they scuffed that in and shoveled it back into the truck and removed it,” Bell said.

The crash occurred at about 9 a.m. Sunday at the intersection of Battle Ridge, Hinckley and Tardiff roads, as the truck was carrying gravel on Hinckley Road, according to Bell.

“Somebody said they (the car driver) were coughing and didn’t stop at the stop sign and hit the truck broadside,” he said. “There was quite a bit of damage to the truck.”

The driver of the car was taken to a hospital with injuries not considered life-threatening and the truck was towed from the scene, according to Bell.

The Clinton Police and Fire departments responded and a fire official called the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, he said.

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Teresa “Te” Kelley, who lives near the accident scene and runs an animal rescue operation there, said Monday she did not hear the accident but smelled the strong odor of diesel fuel when she got up to let her animals out, and went to investigate.

She said she thought the diesel fuel had traveled from the road and into ditch water that flows into culverts that run under Hinckley Road to her property. She said she feared the fuel would go into a stream there and then into the Kennebec River. As Kelley spoke, white swan geese, brown Chinese geese, a Tasmanian devil rooster and a black rooster squawked as they strutted around her property.

Kelley, 55, said she did not think anyone came to remedy the fuel spill Sunday.

“I’m worried about my animals,” she said. “I’m worried about my house. I’m worried about the environment.”

Even after Bell drove to her house later Monday and explained that the DEP had remediated the spill, Kelley said she did not believe that was the case.

David Madore, a spokesman for the state DEP, confirmed Monday the agency had responded and remediated the fuel spill.


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