A trucking company’s mistake has led to a considerable diesel spill in Ohio, causing concerns for residents and environmental agencies alike. 

The fuel leak was discovered on Saturday, March 5th at the R&L Carriers facility in Wilmington, Ohio after a 1 million gallon fuel tank was cleaned and refilled. 

“The tank was emptied for cleaning last week,” said Steve Renninger with the US EPA. “The crew would have entered through a manway. From what I saw Saturday evening, all the bolts were not fully secured when that tank was put back into operation,” which is what caused the 23,000 gallon leak, reported Local 12 News.

The company is now paying for the cleanup of the spill, but may still face a lawsuit for the environmental damage and disrupting the lives of people living along Dutch Creek, the body of water the fuel leaked into. 

Joe Lyon, a lawyer who represents plaintiffs in environmental class-action lawsuits, says there is definitely a potential case to be had against the trucking company. 

“There’s still a lot of anxiety. There’s loss of time. There’s potentially damage in and of itself by the mere fact that these contaminants are present on the property and they certainly aren’t authorized to be there.”

“If the spill occurs as a result of negligence or of knowing conduct, that’s a criminal offense,” agreed former U.S. attorney Ben Glassman.

R&L has not responded to any requests for comment.

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