Driver, trucking company fined $195K for 2013 Nelson fuel spill

$195K in fines for fuel spill

A Calgary-based trucking company and one of its drivers have been fined a combined $195,000 for spilling 35,000 litres of jet fuel into a tributary of the Slocan River back in 2013. 

The spill July 26, 2013 into Lemon Creek near Nelson contaminated the waterway, leading to residential evacuations and $5 million in cleanup costs for the trucking company. 

In a Facebook post Wednesday, the B.C. Conservation Officer Service said the tanker truck was destined for helicopters fighting a forest fire in the area. 

Charges were laid in July 2016 against the fuel truck driver, Executive Flight Centre Fuel Services Ltd. and the B.C. government under the provincial Environmental Management Act and the federal Fisheries Act.

BCCOS says the trucking company pleaded guilty to one count of deleterious deposit into waters frequented by fish, under the Fisheries Act, in Nelson Provincial Court on Friday and has been fined $175,000.

“The majority of the fine - $165,000 – will be directed to the Environmental Damages Fund to be used for fish habitat conservation efforts in the Slocan Valley,” BCCOS said.

The fuel truck driver, Danny Lasante, was convicted of one count of introducing waste into the environment causing pollution under the Environmental Management Act and fined $20,000. Half of the fine is directed to the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation, and due in 2021.

The provincial government was acquitted of all charges related to the spill.

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