Hyannis Man Charged In Brewster Oil Truck Spill

By: Bronwen Walsh

Topics: Groundwater protection , Police, Fire And Harbormaster News

First responders spread absorbent powder on the spill of home heating oil. FILE PHOTO

BREWSTER – A 41-year-old Hyannis man has been charged after his truck turned on its side two weeks ago on Route 137, spilling approximately 2,400 gallons of oil.
A Cape Cod Oil truck driver, Richard McLean of Hyannis, was taken to Cape Cod Hospital after the accident and later released, Police Chief Health Eldredge said Tuesday. The tanker accident happened at around 7:30 p.m. on Friday, June 24 on Route 137 near Twinturn Drive.

“The investigating officer found that McLean was involved in an earlier crash that day at the intersection of Freeman’s way and Route 137,” Eldredge said. McLean was cited in the first accident for failing to stop at a stop sign and leaving the scene of a motor vehicle crash resulting in property damage. Brewster police are working with the State Police truck team to determine if any mechanical issues were involved in the second crash and resulting spill, Eldredge said. The cause of the second crash has not yet been determined, and no charges have yet been filed.

Firefighters from Brewster and Harwich worked to extricate McLean from the cab of the tanker truck as home heating oil was rapidly leaking from the truck's 3,000-gallon tank.

Brewster Fire Chief Robert Moran summoned a response from the Cape's hazardous materials team, drawing specially trained team members and special equipment from around the region.

Moran said firefighters not involved in the rescue of the driver spread absorbent powder and dug earthen dams to try to stem the flow of oil north along the side of the road; however, a quantity of oil could be seen flowing into a storm drain near the northern intersection of Old Long Pond Drive and Route 137.

“The areas where the spill reached are contained,” Moran said Tuesday. “There has been some damage to the edges of the pavement along the road.” DPW crews were scheduled to be back onsite Wednesday, July 6 to continue the cleanup process, which also may require repaving.

Representatives of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency were notified of the incident. The road was closed to traffic for several hours, with cars detoured to Old Long Pond Drive.

The DEP is mandated to post results of its investigation on its website within 60 days, Moran said.