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Idaho officials investigating sulfuric acid spill on roads

September 30, 2018

POCATELLO, Idaho (AP) — A lawn service truck spilled sulfuric acid on roads between Soda Springs and Pocatello last week, leading a cyclist to suffer serious injuries after he slipped on the hazardous liquid, Idaho authorities said.

The truck is estimated to have leaked more than 60 gallons of sulfuric acid on the roads Thursday evening, and fire crews worked overnight to get it cleaned up before the Friday morning commute, The Idaho State Journal reported.

Pocatello resident Rob Ashley, 48, lost control of his bicycle when he encountered the slippery acid on Bannock Highway. He sustained a broken hip and road rash from the crash.

The lawn truck driver also sustained minor burns when he tried to stop the leak. Police say any motorists who drove through the sulfuric acid puddles should wash their vehicles right away using a commercial sprayer with soap and water. The acid can severely damage cars and tires.

Both the Idaho State Police and Department of Environmental Quality are investigating.

Pocatello police found the driver just after 7 p.m. Thursday after getting reports about the truck. The driver, whose name has not been released, was trying to stop the leak at the time and sustained burns in the process. He was treated at a doctor’s office.

Police say they don’t think the acid significantly damaged the roads, but their bigger concern was the risk of injury to people and damage to vehicles.

Authorities say the truck began leaking in Soda Springs and continued as the driver traveled to Lava Hot Springs and through the towns of McCammon, Inkom and Pocatello.

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Information from: Idaho State Journal, http://www.journalnet.com

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