The stench of sewage wafted across the Trans-Canada Highway Wednesday afternoon after a septic truck travelling northbound lost control and barrel-rolled across the highway, landing upside down near the road shoulder.
No other vehicles were involved and the driver of the truck walked away unscathed from the accident, which happened just after noon. Police say about 800 gallons of sewage leak from the tanker, some into Thetis Lake Park by the edge of the highway.
West Shore RCMP spokesperson Cpl. Kathy Rochlitz said that the truck changed lanes from the centre lane to the outside passing lane just past the Colwood exit, and caught the side of the ditch, which sent the truck out of control.
The exact cause of the accident is under investigation. Rochlitz said that there didn’t appear to be any evidence of drugs or alcohol. She did say that for such an accident to happen with no serious injuries and no other vehicles involved is rare and lucky.
“It’s one of those situations where we usually expect to see much more significant injuries,” said Rochlitz, “but we’re very fortunate in this case.”
West Shore RCMP and fire departments from View Royal, Colwood and Langford were called to the scene. Hazmat crews and the Ministry of Environment attended the scene to deal with the spill.
Traffic headed northbound on the highway has been diverted for the time being. The highway is expected to reopen around 4 p.m. In the meantime traffic is being diverted down the Colwood exit and then back on to the highway via Six Mile Road.