Originally created 12/21/05

Fuel spills in mall parking lot



Authorities were called to an Augusta Mall parking lot Tuesday afternoon after a reported diesel fuel spill.

According to mall manager Linda Hardin, a woman who owned a Ford F-350 pickup with dual gas tanks accidentally hit a switch that caused the overflow spillage of diesel fuel contained in a 50-gallon container in the bed of her truck.

The fuel spilled onto a portion of the lot and drained into a nearby storm drain.

Ms. Hardin said there was no threat to public safety.

Richmond County Fire Department Special Operations Chief Wayne Taylor concurred, adding that the spill didn't affect any mall patrons, many of whom were completing their Christmas shopping activities.

The 2003 model pickup was parked adjacent to a road that runs alongside Bobby Jones Expressway, several hundred feet from an upper-level entrance to Sears and an entry to the mall's food court.

"The diesel was confined inside the drain and never entered a nearby creek or retention pond," Chief Taylor said.

Between 20 and 30 gallons of diesel spilled from the truck to the ground, he said.

In addition to the fire department, the state Environmental Protection Department and Richmond County Sheriff's Office responded.

A private hazardous-materials cleanup company was also called in to assist.

Reach Timothy Cox at (706) 823-3217 or tim.cox@augustachronicle.com.



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