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Firefighters respond to fuel spill at Whitehorse gas station

It is unknown how much gasoline spilled on the ground

The Whitehorse Fire Department responded to a gasoline spill at the North 60 Petro near Walmart on the afternoon of Aug. 10. According to an eyewitness, the spill was caused by a woman filling up her vehicle at the gas station.

“I hear her screaming and holding the gas pump, flailing it around, and it was shooting gas everywhere. [She was] saying it won’t shut off,” Roger Erdmann told the News.

Erdmann, who was visiting from Alaska and at the gas station when the incident happened, said the woman dropped the pump on the ground and ran to alert an attendant. She could not find one, and another customer at the station hit the emergency shut-off button.

The woman then called the fire department.

Barry Blisner, platoon chief with the department, said that by the time department personnel arrived at the scene, “everything was fine, and there was no more gas coming out of the nozzle.” He notes that due to the heavy rain, it was not immediately clear how much fuel had spilled on the ground.

“It was difficult to say how much [fuel] flowed from the nozzle itself, and she wasn’t sure whether it kept flowing or not. She thought it had, but, yeah,” Blisner said.

Blisner reminds the public to be careful when using the hands-free nozzle locking clips while at the pump and suggests manually flipping the on-off switch on the pump before removing the nozzle from your vehicle.

“What this lady learned, as well, is almost all gas stations — I believe all gas stations by code have to — have an emergency shut off. So, as soon as you hit that, it just shuts down all the pumps,” Blisner said.

“The emergency shut off did what it was supposed to do.”

Contact Matthew Bossons at matthew.bossons@yukon-news.com