Transport company ordered to pay $80K for petrol spill

Scott’s Transport Industries ordered to pay $80,000 towards two community projects following fuel spilll at petrol station in May 2008.

Scott’s Transport Industries has been ordered to pay $80,000 towards two community projects, following a 7,200-litre spill of unleaded petrol at a Wantirna petrol station in May 2008.

The company last week pleaded guilty in the Ringwood Magistrates’ Court to one charge of pollution of waters, making the water harmful to wildlife.

The court heard the spill occurred when a petrol tanker was turning over a raised area of the service station driveway. The tail of the prime mover’s left chassis rail ruptured the delivery pipe underneath the front of the tanker.

EPA Victoria’s CEO John Merritt says the entire contents of one of the tanker’s compartments spilled as a result of the incident. The petrol entered stormwater drains on site, making its way into nearby Dandenong Creek beside the JW Manson Reserve.

"The spill caused a significant environmental impact to the area, killing nine ducks and several fish," he says.

"Two police officers stationed at the creek to prevent public access to the bike track also required treatment from ambulance officers after being affected by the fumes."

The court heard the EPA’s investigation determined that the incident would not have occurred if the vehicle had complied with the minimum clearance specifications of the Australian Standards.

The $80,000 penalty, imposed under the alternative sentencing section of the Environment Protection Act, will fund two Victorian community environmental projects.

No conviction was recorded and the company was ordered to pay EPA’s costs of $50,000.

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