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Tanker Leak Shuts Part of A38

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3:44pm 14th December 2012
(Updated 3:44pm 14th December 2012)

An overturned tanker shuts one of Cornwall's main roads for hours.tanker

The A38 has now reopened between the Trerulefoot and Carkeel roundabouts. Police say there could be further disruptions from 8pm while more resurfacing work is carried out.

It is after thousands of litres spilled out overnight. In all the tanker was carrying 38,000 litres. Estimates on how much has been lost vary up to around ten thousand litres.

Three lanes of the carriageway will need to be resurfaced.

A spokesperson for Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service said: "At 1855hrs the Fire Service was called to a fuel tanker that was reported to have become disengaged from a recovery vehicle and was leaking. Three crews from Saltash which includes an Enviromental Support Vehicle and a Rescue Tender from Bodmin are on scene.

"The Specialist Team is in attendance and is in the closureprocess of decanting the fuel from the stricken tanker into containers which is now known to be in the region of 3,500 - 4,000 litres. The Fire Service is remaining in attendance ensuring the scene is safe. This operation is expected to continue for a considerable period."

Nobody was hurt in the incident.

Diversions have been set up along the A388 and A390. Daniel from Redruth is struggling to get to work in Plymouth. He said: "It is a nightmare. A big nightmare. I don't know what I'm going to do. I'm really late for work now. I might have to go to the Torpoint ferries. I might have to have the day off."

Annwynn had come from South Wales to see her daughter's boyfriend's passing out parade in Plymouth. She said: "We were about ten miles away from our destination. The road was closed and we were diverted around all the country lanes. We didn't know where we were going and it was gridlock."

But Pirate FM has learnt that some drivers are putting the lives of the emergency crews at risk by ignoring the closures. Some have been driving through the roadblocks, past the stricken tanker and across a damaged road, flooded with fuel.

river at tideford

MPC Darren Maynard said: "When you have a fuel spillage to this extent it only take a motorcyclist to fall off and create a spark and we would have had more of a major incident than we have at the moment."

It is feared around a thousand litres of petrol has got into the River Tiddy at Tideford.

The Environment Agency has got booms in place to try to contain it but says it is still trying to work out how bad the damage it is.

It said around a thousand litres of petrol had already spilled into the river.

Mike Ingham, from the Environment Agency, said: "We have put oil absorbant booms in which would try to protect that. And we think with the work the emergency services have done with our environment officers overnight, we saved probably about two to two and half thousand litres from entering the water course."

Because it is petrol, rather than oil, teams are hoping that some will evaporate away.

Fire crews are trying to disperse fumes from the stricken tanker, allowing them to move it.

3:44pm 14th December 2012

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