Friday, February 23 , 2018, 8:35 am | Fair 48º


Local News

Video Released of Buellton Fuel Spill, Sheriff’s Department Asks for Help to Identify Driver

(Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department video)

A surveillance camera video released Saturday reportedly shows the driver and vehicle involved in a diesel fuel spill in Buellton, the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department said.

The Sheriff’s Department released the video, which is available on the agency’s Facebook page, in hopes someone can recognize the vehicle and identify the driver.

Authorities also advised agricultural and industrial users to check their diesel inventory for potentially stolen fuel.

According to sheriff’s spokeswoman Kelly Hoover, investigators have determined that the suspect entered the city from southbound Highway 101 about 12:15 a.m. Friday, driving a light-colored Chevrolet Tahoe with an unregistered trailer attached.

Authorities say the trailer was loaded with nine 55-gallon drums containing red diesel fuel. However, Hoover said, the barrels were leaking fuel that was spilling out of the trailer.

The driver parked at the corner of Kendale Road and Odense Street, and got out of the the vehicle to examine the fuel leaking out of the barrels and the trailer.  

Hoover said the suspect then immediately unhitched the trailer and drove off.

The fuel leaked all over the roadway, eventually spilling into a storm drain leading to the nearby Santa Ynez River.

“It’s unknown how much fuel escaped into the storm drain, but of the nine barrels, one was empty when responders arrived,” Hoover said.

Investigators say the fuel, with a value of approximately $1,800, was likely stolen from an agricultural or industrial user.

Hoover said farms, ranches or businesses that maintain red diesel fuel on their properties should check their inventory and report any missing fuel.

The Sheriff’s Department has requested that anyone who recognizes the vehicle or the driver associated with the trailer to call 805.683.2724. Anonymous tips may be made by calling 805.681.4171.

Noozhawk North County editor Janene Scully can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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