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Spill cleanup at $170K*

*So far, as company answers questions

Charlton Welding & Repair owner Larry McKissick II, second from the right in the gray shirt, receives information from officials dealing with the diesel spill. Ryan Grannan-Doll. (click for larger version)
June 16, 2010
CHARLTON — The owner of the business which state environmental officials have deemed responsible for last week's diesel fuel spill admitted Wednesday he did not report it to them.

Charlton Welding & Repair owner Larry McKissick II admitted he never told the state Department of Environmental Protection of the spill. DEP Emergency Response Section Chief Nicholas Child confirmed that Wednesday.

"It is under investigation," he said of the spill.

McKissick did not comment on why he did not report it.

As of Wednesday, June 16, crews had cleaned up a total of 2,400-2,600 gallons of oil and diesel from wetlands and the area surrounding the Cady Brook Condominium complex on Southbridge Road (Route 169), according to Nicholas Child, an Emergency Response section chief with the state Department of Environmental Protection.

Child briefed officials Wednesday on the ongoing cleanup effort, which started after the spill occurred sometime between the night of Thursday, June 10 and the next morning.

Several thousand gallons is estimated to have spilled from a tanker truck at McKissick's business on Griffin Road, the Board of Health and DEP said in a Monday, June 14 statement. It is unclear exactly how much spilled, but the truck had a capacity of 7,000 gallons.

McKissick has blamed the spill on vandals who he said allegedly tampered with the fuel locks. McKissick said he waited until Monday to report the alleged crime to the police.

"We were busy [cleaning up his land]," McKissick said.

Police Chief James Pervier said his department is investigating to determine who caused the spill and how. He would not comment on further details.

See Friday's Southbridge Evening News for complete coverage of community news.

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