Lehigh Valley

Tanker spills 175 gallons of gas onto Nazareth street

Tanker spills 175 gallons of gas onto Nazareth street

NAZARETH, Pa. - Hazardous materials crews from two counties descend on Nazareth, Northampton Co., to deal with the aftermath of a major fuel spill.

The incident happened shortly after noon as a tanker was re-fueling at the Shell gas station at East Walnut and New streets.

"They were fueling the tanks and one of the lines popped off," said Nazareth Mayor Carl Strye. "They estimate that about 175 gallons of fuel spilled out on the tarmac there."

People were evacuated from their homes as a precaution, but the incident could have been a lot worse.

A Lehigh County hazmat team spread material to soak up the gasoline while others went to nearby homes.

"They just said houses are being evacuated from a fuel spill," said homeowner, John Jago.

A handful of residents were evacuated for about two hours while crews went to work.

Officials said the main concern was runoff in the drains because people inside of the gas station tried to use water to wash away the fuel.

"Our concern is that what's laying in there. Is it going to get to the sewer department? Is it going to get to where the storm drains drain out, too? But we think we have that under control now." said Strye.

Police said they hope to have the East Walnut street open to traffic again by 6 p.m.

So far, officials haven't said whether the operator of the truck will face any charges.

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