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Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Paraffin truck leak in Kent takes nearly a day to clean up

Paraffin truck leak in Kent takes nearly a day to clean up:

A truck leaked 15 to 50 gallons of paraffin, closing a freeway on ramp for nearly a day as road crews failed in one cleanup method after another, state Transportation Department officials said.

The truck driver was alerted by another motorist about 6:35 a.m. Tuesday, stopped on the State Route 167 onramp in this suburb south of Seattle and found a cap was loose, department spokeswoman Meghan N. Soptich said.

Cleanup workers initially tried sanding an 8-foot-wide, 200-foot-long stretch of the ramp that was coated with a quarter-inch of paraffin.

That didn't work, nor did scattering dirt to absorb the wax or applying a degreaser.

Workers began making headway after bringing in a hot-water truck and equipment to vacuum the melted paraffin, but the effort stalled when the truck broke down.

Finally, after a second hot-water truck was summoned, the road was reopened shortly after midnight Wednesday.