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Tanker Truck Overturns At Brock Intersection

By Staff | Aug 18, 2010

This photograph of another trucking accident at the intersection of Brock Ridge Road and state Route 7 marks the sixth accident of its kind in nearly six months. (Photo by Bill Hughes)

A tanker truck weighing approximately 50,000 pounds carrying roughly 4,000 gallons of brine water (water produced from a gas well site) was overturned at the intersection of Brock Ridge and state Route 7 just after noon on Aug. 13. The driver of the truck owned and operated by Central Environmental Services, LLC out of Parkersburg was injured and taken by Wetzel County Hospital’s Air Evac Lifeteam’s helicopter. The driver was released from the hospital the same day.

The driver was traveling south on Brock Ridge Road and was unable to stop going down the 18 percent grade at the bottom of the hill that connects to state Route 7. The truck overturned onto its right side, stopped only by the guard rail. The truck, blocking both lanes of state Route 7 stopped traffic in both directions at various times over a six-hour period. The Air Evac helicopter landed at the Chesapeake Energy staging area at the bottom of Brock Ridge Road to care for the driver of the tanker truck. Vance Monroe Towing handled recovery and removal. When asked for comment on the accident, Jeff Harper, a general manager at CES said, “My take on it is that I lost a truck.”

Several emergency crews and volunteer fire departments were on site along with the West Virginia State Police, the Public Service Commission, the Department of Highways, and the Wetzel County Action Group. West Virginia State Police Corporal C.J. Lantz reported the PCS and the DOH inspected the truck and found no violations to the vehicle. Lantz did note the truck was not equipped with a Jacobs engine or exhaust brake system. While such systems are commonly found on such trucks, Harper commented Jacobs Vehicle Systems aren’t required. “They can be helpful but they don’t eliminate the possibility of an accident,” said Harper.

According to the Wetzel County Action Group, this accident marks the sixth in nearly six months where large trucks were unable to stop coming down Brock Ridge Road. The DOH has marked the top of the hill at the south end of Brock Ridge Road as an 18 percent grade for one mile and the north end at the intersection of state Route 89 as a 14 percent grade.

In addition to these incidents, in the past six months two trucks have rolled over in various places on Brock Ridge Road. The WCAG offered a comparison for those people less familiar with the road: the hill on state Route 180 south of New Martinsville is marked as an eight percent grade.