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UPDATE: Truck accident spurs clean-up effort

January 17th, 2014 1:41 pm by Tony Casey

UPDATE: Truck accident spurs clean-up effort

A Washington County dump truck rests across Little Cherokee Creek after crashing Friday. (Lee Talbert/Press Photo Editor)


Johnson City’s Emergency Management Agency said his crews were relatively lucky with the cleanup of one-vehicle accident that occurred Friday morning, Director Nes Levotch said.


About 11 a.m., an empty Washington County solid waste truck was traveling west on Cherokee Road, between Cecil Gray Road and Buncombe Hill, when it crossed into the eastbound lane, went downhill off the road, into a tree and over a creek.


“The truck straddled the creek,” Levotch said.


The transmission and parts of the engine fell out of the 2001 International and leaked what Levotch said was about four gallons of transmission fluid and six gallons of oil on land, but close enough to the creek to warrant a cleanup.


He said they put out four booms to soak up the fluids, which will be left out all weekend, as is protocol.


The property on which the truck settled, was at 3354 Cherokee Road, and is owned by Jerry Baker, who helped aid in getting the truck removed from his property. Because the struck tree fell on the truck, it had to be removed so the vehicle could clear power lines while being brought back to the road.


Tennessee Highway Patrol Public Information Officer Sgt. Bill Miller said the driver of the truck over corrected after crossing the center line and exited the road.


He said the driver, 58-year-old Roy Lunsford, of Jonesborough, had minor injuries and was taken to Johnson City Medical Center. 


Wheels on the truck had locked up, so the towing wrecker had to drag the truck back onto the road. Traffic had been detoured from where the truck went off the road.


The Embreeville Volunteer Fire Department was on the scene to help with the containment of the creek.

Earlier version of the story:

A Washington County dump truck crashed into Little Cherokee Creek off Cherokee Road on Friday, prompting emergency management officials to begin cleaning up what was believed to be a hazardous materials spill.

The crash was reported near the intersection of Buncomb Hill Road about 11:15 a.m.

The Tennessee Highway Patrol was investigating.

Lee Talbert contributed to this story.

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