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Diesel fuel spill triggers $25,000 fine

A Quebec company has been fined $25,000, plus a victim fine surcharge, after pleading guilty to a charge that it di...


A Quebec company has been fined $25,000, plus a victim fine surcharge, after pleading guilty to a charge that it did not clean up a spill of diesel fuel that occurred following a tractor trailer collision with a passenger vehicle.

The company, 9031-3859 Quebec Inc., is located at 972 Rue Notre Dame, Repentigny, Quebec and is the leasee of a tractor trailer.

On March 23, 2005, the tractor trailer was involved in a collision with a passenger vehicle on Highway 401 westbound, in the city of Quinte West. As a result, the tractor trailer’s fuel tank was punctured and approximately 100 litres of diesel fuel spilled on to the gravel shoulder. There was a concern that the diesel fuel could contaminate a nearby ditch if there was rain before the cleanup.

The Court heard that ministry officials notified the company on March 23, 24 and 29 of its obligation to clean up the spill site and remove the contaminated gravel. On March 30, 2005, after no action from the company, the Ministry of Transportation directed a private company to clean up the site and remove the contaminated soil.

The company was charged following an investigation by the Ministry of Environment’s Investigations and Enforcement Branch.

9031-3859 Quebec Inc. pleaded guilty to failing to prevent, eliminate and ameliorate the adverse effect caused by the diesel fuel, contrary to s.93 (1) of the Environmental Protection Act. The court was told the company paid $12,964 to the Minister of Finance to cover the costs of emergency services and the cleanup by the private contractor.

Justice of the Peace D. Chapelle heard the case in the Ontario Court of Justice in Belleville, Ontario, on July 10, 2007.


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