Fatal Starr County crash leads to well water warning
by Benjamin Treviño | January 25th, 2024 | 18 Wheelers
Officials are urging residents in the Starr County town of La Gloria to avoid drinking well water after a tanker truck crashed and spilled a substantial amount of diesel fuel. The truck’s driver was killed in the one-vehicle accident.
According to the Texas Department of Public Safety, a fuel truck driven by 36-year-old Juan Carlos Mendoza Jr. of Donna was traveling west on FM 1017 when it disregarded a stop sign at the road’s T-intersection with FM 755.
DPS Sgt. Maria Hernandez said the vehicle proceeded through the intersection, struck a fence and a tree, which prevented the truck from hitting an occupied home. Mendoza, however, died at the scene from his injuries, according to Hernandez. The crash happened about midnight on the morning of January 24.
The Texas Department of Transportation has stated that the fuel truck’s tank spilled nearly 4,000 gallons of diesel, and a hazmat crew was dispatched to the scene. La Gloria is located about 31 miles north of Rio Grande City.
The fuel spill prompted the Starr County Emergency Management Office to issue a well water warning to residents living in the area. The emergency notice urged residents not to consume water from their “natural resources” until further notice. The warning was still in effect as of this writing.
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