JERSEY SHORE - An unspecified amount of treated frack water ran into Pine Creek following a tractor-trailer crash about 1 p.m. Wednesday just south of Ramsey along Route 44.
The 4,600-gallon tanker driven by Christopher M. Hollis, of Catawissa, was traveling north when he lost control of the vehicle. The tanker struck a rock cliff, traveled about 150 feet, then struck the rock cliff again along the passenger side. The tanker came to rest on its side.
According to police reports, about 4,500 gallons of the treated frack water spilled, with some of it draining into Pine Creek through a nearby storm water drain.
PAUL GARRETT/Sun-Gazette Correspondent
Above, fire police direct traffic and secure the scene of a tanker truck crash on Route 44 near Ramsey so cleanup can continue.
A small amount of engine fluids also were leaking from the tanker when emergency personnel arrived, but they were contained, according to state police.
Members of the state Department of Environmental Protection and of the state Fish and Game Commission were sent out to the site to take samples, which will help determine the environmental impact of the leaking fluids. According to the Associated Press, the agency sampled various spots on Pine Creek and said it had not detected any harm to fish.
"There will be, however, a cleanup conducted on the berm of the road, which will involve removing contaminated gravel and dirt," said Amanda Whitman, press aide for the department.
The road was closed Wednesday afternoon as firefighters from the Independent Fire Co. and Citizens Fire Co. worked to cleanup fluids and debris and upright the truck.
Hydro fracturing, or fracking, is the technique used by drillers to tap into deep reserves of natural gas. Each fracked well can produce millions of gallons of contaminated wastewater.