Fuel spill draws cleanup response

"A woman who was apparently confused with the operation of a diesel pump accidentally spilled more than two gallons of the fuel on the ground at a Freeland gas station Thursday afternoon, Dec. 14.The spill at Freeland's Short Stop Texaco station drew an emergency response from Fire Protection District 3 volunteers, who were able to sop up much of the fuel before a heavy downpour washed it into storm drains and into a grassy ditch nearby.Because spilled petroleum - especially heavy petroleum like diesel and motor oil - can be deadly for marine life in Puget Sound, the FD3 volunteers wanted to get as much of it cleaned up as possible. District Chief Don Smith said the spill was small, making it easier to contain.It came up pretty easily, he said.Still, bystanders who saw the spill happen were shocked by how much fuel hit the ground. Lynda Kenworthy, a barista at the nearby 1504 Coffee Bar, said the woman who caused the spill seemed to have no idea what was happening.She was just holding the nozzle. It's like she didn't know what to do, Kenworthy said.What fuel did escape the cleanup probably will not be a significant pollution problem. It drained with the rainwater into an 800-foot-long bioswale installed by Short Stop building owner Erl Bangston. Bangston said the grasses in the swale should hold the diesel until it breaks down biologically. "

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