MARIN COUNTY (CBS SF) — California Highway Patrol officials said 4,000 gallons of gasoline spilled when a big-rig with two tank trailers overturned on Sir Francis Drake Boulevard near San Quentin State Prison in Marin County on Monday, prompting a closure that lasted nearly 20 hours.

According to the California Highway Patrol, Sir Francis Drake Blvd near San Quentin State Prison reopened shortly before 2:30 a.m. Tuesday.

It took until Monday night to overturn the tanker that contained two gasoline tank trailers and put it on a heavy-duty tow truck.

The driver of the big-rig, Christopher Knight, 30, of Sacramento, tried to recover the sliding trailer but completely lost control and crashed at about 7 a.m. Monday, CHP Officer Andrew Barclay said.

The crash occurred as the big-rig traveled west on Sir Francis Drake Boulevard and rolled onto its right sides, then slid across the eastbound lane.

The CHP had initially estimated about 1,700 gallons of fuel spilled from the rear trailer of the big-rig.

The company that owns the big-rig, Alliance Tank Lines Inc. of Dixon, paid a clean-up crew to respond to the spill, Barclay said.

Each of the tank trailers contained 4,000 gallons of fuel, Barclay said.

The rear trailer ruptured and spilled fuel onto the roadway. The 4,000 gallons in the other trailer that was not punctured were vacuumed into another tractor-trailer that responded to the scene, Barclay said.

Knight was not injured and was able to free himself from the truck. No other vehicles were involved in the crash, Barclay said.

PG&E shut off power in the area, including power to homes that were evacuated in the prison complex on Valley Way.



A 1,000-foot exclusion zone was established around the spill, including the 10 evacuated homes in San Quentin Village.

Sir Francis Drake Boulevard was closed between Larkspur Landing Circle and Interstate Highway 580 and traffic was diverted onto city streets, causing a backup on Interstate Highway 580 and on San Rafael streets.

“I’ve been trying to get from Marin General to this point,” said one stuck driver. “I’ve been sitting in the car for an hour and a half — still ain’t at the bridge.”



The Golden Gate Ferry Terminal at Larkspur Landing remained open throughout the day and ferry commuters were not affected, Barclay said.

The truck and trailers were removed at about 9 p.m., and crews paved the roadway before it was reopened, according to the CHP.

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife, the U.S. Coast Guard, the Central Marin and San Rafael police department, the Marin County Sheriff’s Office, the Larkspur Fire Department and the Marin County hazardous materials team all responded to the scene.



TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Bay City News Service contributed to this report.


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