Overturned tanker truck spills oil into lake

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Updated: 1/28/2013 9:12 am Published: 1/26/2013 2:36 pm

An 80,000 pound oil tanker truck crashed into a four-door car with two women in it along Highway 412 driving eastbound and spilled about 5,000 gallons of the 9,500 gallons of oil into the Keystone Lake.

The accident happened just before 10:00 a.m. over the Keystone Lake land bridge.  All three people involved, the truck driver and the two women driving the 1997 Buick Lesabre were taken to the hospital.

Oklahoma Highway Patrol Trooper Mark Sparks said 20-year-old Gwenuana Deshae Dean was driving the Buick with a flat tire at a lower speed limit. 20-year-old Kayla Dee Nichols was in the passenger seat.  45-year-old Michael Troy Royster was driving the 2012 Western Star tank truck and was not able to slow down fast enough when he realized Dean was driving slowly.  

He smashed their car and flipped his tanker truck into the guardrail spilling 5,000 gallons of oil off the bridge and into the lake water.

Royster was pinned inside the cab for one hour and was airlifted to a Tulsa hospital.  

The clean-up crew members included: The Army Corps of Engineers, The Department of Environmental Equality, The Department of Wildlife Conservation, Emergency Response Service’s Environmental Remediation Specialists, and other local agencies.

Crews spent more than eight hours cleaning up the oil and putting absorbent material, called booms into the water to sock of the oil.                    

“This weekend’s rain will help dilute and disperse the oil,” said William Jeffries, the lake manger with the Army Corps of Engineers.  “Accidents happen in the worst spots.” 

Crews had to remove another 4,000 gallon os oil still inside the flipped over tanker.  They used a vacuum truck, called a Super Sucker, to suck up the oil from the tanker truck into te Super Sucker and then Western Star sent out another empty tanker truck to carry the remaining oil away.  At about 8:00 p.m. the wreckers were able to haul the tanker truck away.  

The eastbound lane was down to one lane for the entire day and then opened backup after the tanker truck was removed. 


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