September 22, 2014

Medina
Partly sunny
55°F

Tanker accident closes Fenn Road, evacuates 20 residents

MEDINA TWP. — Cleanup crews worked into the evening Sunday after a tractor-trailer overturned on Fenn Road early Saturday morning and spilled part of its 5,800-gallon load of gasoline.

Capt. Mark Roberts of the Medina Township Fire Department reported that the truck, owned by Kenan Advantage of Canton, crashed just west of state Route 3 around 2:25 a.m.

Crews work to clean up gas that spilled after a truck carrying 5,800 gallons of gas crashed in Medina Township early Saturday morning. The driver received only minor injuries, and four homes were evacuated. (GAZETTE PHOTO BY MARIA KACIK KULA)

Crews work to clean up gas that spilled after a truck carrying 5,800 gallons of gas crashed in Medina Township early Saturday morning. The driver received only minor injuries, and four homes were evacuated. (GAZETTE PHOTO BY MARIA KACIK KULA)

He said the truck was driving westbound when its wheels somehow dropped off the side of the road and the trailer rolled. A couple of the compartments cracked, releasing gas into the road and surrounding areas.

Roberts said the driver of the tanker, William West, 53, of Scio, didn’t suffer any serious injuries and was charged with failure to control.

He eventually was taken to Medina Hospital to be checked, and later released.

Roberts said at least 2,500 gallons of gasoline were released. The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency was called to oversee the scene. Kenan Advantage hired an emergency spill response company to do the cleanup.

About 20 residents from four homes were evacuated soon after the accident to the fire station at Fenn and Huffman roads, Roberts said.

Sue Gulacheck, her husband, Doug, and their 10 children were among those evacuated. She said her neighbors came to their home around 2:30 a.m. to tell them of the accident and that they may be evacuated.

“The cab (of the truck) was totally smashed. I didn’t know how the guy lived. He just got up and walked out on his own,” Gulacheck said. The truck had run over a tree and hit a utility pole in their neighbor’s yard.

She said the family was evacuated around 4 a.m., and everything went smoothly at the fire station. Rescue crews and the Medina County Red Cross “were great. They absolutely bent over backwards for us,” she said.

She said the family was given a hotel room so they could get some rest.

“We need sleep. I can’t believe the babies have done so well,” said Gulacheck, whose youngest child is 2 years old.

She said crews told them they would keep working on cleaning up the gas.

“We were assured they would not leave until there’s not a trace of the gas,” Gulacheck said.

Crews were still on scene Sunday and said they would excavate dirt where gasoline was spilled, flush the ditches and storm sewers with water, and put new dirt on affected areas.

Contact Maria Kacik Kula at (330) 721-4049 or mkacik@medina-gazette.com.