UPDATE: Metal pipe punctures big rig tank, 30 gallons of diesel spilled

A Los Angeles County Fire Department truck moves quickly to scene.
A Los Angeles County Fire Department truck moves quickly to scene. Katharine Lotze/The Signal

Debris on Interstate 5 is being blamed for 30 gallons of diesel spilled onto the freeway Friday morning, after a metal pipe punctured a gas tank of a big rig.

Shortly after 11:30 a.m., officials with the Los Angeles County Fire Department received reports of a big rig leaking diesel from a ruptured saddle tank, Fire Department spokesman Sean Rios said.

In a report issued later in the day by investigators with the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services, a metal pipe was blamed for the incident.

The report lists the cause of the spill as: “Debris on freeway.”

“The big rig’s driver’s side saddle bag tank was struck by a metal pipe on the freeway, resulting in a release of diesel fuel onto asphalt,” according to the state’s hazardous materials spill report.

“Responsible party will handle cleanup,” the report concluded, noting no water was impacted.

When the tank was punctured, the driver of the semi pulled over on the shoulder of the northbound lanes of I-5, at the 2,000-foot elevation level, near CHP Road.

Firefighters in two HazMat units who are specially trained to handle hazardous material were called to the spill.

“Caltrans was also en route,” Fire Department spokesman Austin Bennett said.

None of the 30 gallons got into the water system or storm drains.

“No lanes will be shut down at this time, big rig was able to make it to the dirt right shoulder,” said CHP Officer Josh Greengard

“It’s very wide and open at that location, so hopefully we have enough room to accommodate the incident,” he said.

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