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22/11/17 Oil spills on roads - check that your vehicle is not to blame

Oil Spills

 

Drivers are being asked to take extra care to ensure that their oil tanks are secure as the incidences of oils spills on our roads continue.

 

Speaking this week about this ongoing hazard Brian O’Donnell, Road Safety Officer with Donegal County Council said “all drivers of agricultural vehicles, fuel delivery trucks and hauliers should ensure that their fuel tanks are secure as there continues to be incidents of oil spills on our roads”.

 

He added “if you run a diesel vehicle don't overfill your tank and remember to replace your fuel cap properly and ensure that your vehicle is well serviced.  If you see a problem, get it fixed immediately before it causes problems to others.

 

“Apart from the cost to the Council to clean up these spills, these spills can be a contributory factor to a traffic collision leading to serious injury or the loss of a life. By taking extra care with your fuel cap, you are not only increasing safety on the road but you are also saving fuel.”

 

Mr. O’Donnell explains “oil or diesel spills on Donegal’s roads cause an unacceptable hazard to motorists, motorcyclists and threaten the safety of all road users. Vehicles can skid, swerve and lose control on patches of diesel, endangering drivers, passengers, other road users, pedestrians and property.

 

“Wet weather can worsen slicks and, coupled with bad light, can sometimes make them impossible to see. Diesel can take up to 100 days to break down so can remain on the road surface for a long period, often reappearing only during rain”.

 

Apart from the hazards it creates it makes economic sense not to waste fuel at its current price and the cleanup of these oil spills is at a cost to Councils.

 

Raising awareness on how to prevent this hazard

“To raise awareness of the problem, and the potential consequences and dangers to all road users, the public’s help is needed” says Brian O’Donnell and he asks the public to remember the following simple steps:

 

  • If you run a diesel vehicle don't overfill your tank and remember to replace your fuel cap properly - it's money down the drain if you don't.
  • Ensure your vehicle is well serviced. If you see a problem, get it fixed immediately before it causes problems to others.
  • As well as causing hazards on the road, diesel also corrodes the bitumen road surface causing longer term safety problems.
  • If you drop diesel on the roadway you could be recharged with the cost of repairing the damage.
  • Early reporting is essential. The earlier they are reported, the sooner they can be dealt with.
  • Promote education at haulage companies, drivers, farmers, bus companies, petrol filling stations etc. about the problems caused by overfilling, poorly fitted fuel caps and poorly maintained vehicles – all of which can lead to diesel spillage.

 

“There is national recognition amongst motorists and motorcycle groups that diesel spills are a very real issue and it is in this context that we are trying to make progress in our own region. If we can cap this problem in Donegal we will be making a real contribution to solving a national, as well as a local threat to road safety”.

 

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