Helicopter fuel spill in B.C. creek sparks water warning
Residents near Slocan, B.C., have been told not to drink their water after a tanker truck carrying helicopter fuel ended up in nearby Lemon Creek.
Locals say the truck was transporting fuel to firefighters working the Perry Ridge fire when it went up the wrong road and ended up in the creek around 3:30 p.m. PT on Friday.
The driver was not hurt in the incident, but the truck remained in the creek as darkness fell on Friday night, according to Judy Derco, who runs the Lemon Creek Lodge.
Derco said some residents closer to the spill have had to leave because of the smell of fuel.
"We are a 20 minute walk from the creek but we can smell the fuel a bit. The people right near the creek have left. The smell is too overwhelming."
There were unconfirmed reports that a local state of emergency had been declared and some residents near the creek were being ordered to leave their homes for health reasons.
"Right now at this point nobody can drink their water," said Derco.
Derco was also concerned about the fish in the water downstream. Lemon Creek feeds into the Slocan River, which feeds the Kootenay River which feeds the Columbia River.
Her lodge is hosting a wedding this weekend, but the guest are determined to carry on as long as they can, Derco said.
"They are troopers. They are holding on. They will keep on going," she said.