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Fuel Tanker Accident on I-89 in Middlesex Leaves Driver and Son Dead; Major Fuel Cleanup Needed

Vt. State Police - 9:47 am Tue Feb 20th, 2018

Belanger was traveling south on I-89, operating a tractor/trailer unit. The trailer was a tank, with several thousand gallons of fuel.

According to witness statements, as well as roadway evidence, the vehicle suddenly veered to the left, heading in a southeasterly direction and leaving the travel portion of the road. The vehicle crossed the center median and entered the northbound lane. As it did, the tractor/trailer unit rolled onto the passenger side, and continued sliding southeasterly. As it did, the trailer began to rotate counter-clockwise. The tractor/trailer unit continued sliding southeasterly, leaving the east side of the road. In doing so, the tractor collided with a steep embankment, causing massive damage to the cab. The passenger door was torn off, the driver door ripped open and the roof was torn off. Belanger was ejected from the truck and his son was pinned in the cab. Both were pronounced dead at the scene.

Both victims were subsequently transported to the State Medical Examiner's Office for autopsy. Inspectors from the Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles were on scene and will conduct a subsequent inspection of the tractor and trailer.

Several thousand gallons of fuel were spilled as a result of damage to the tank. Members of Accuworks Hazardous Response team in conjunction with the EPA will be conducting clean-up and assessing environmental damage.

Both lanes of Interstate 89 between Exit 9 (Middlesex) and Exit 8 (Montpelier) were shut down until the scene was secured and stabilized, due to the crash scene itself and the fuel hazard. Traffic was detoured via Rt 2 from the time of the incident until the interstate was opened back up at approximately 0140 hrs on 19 FEB 2018.

The Vermont State Police were assisted by the Middlesex Fire Department, Berlin Fire Department, Waterbury Fire Department, Vermont Hazardous Response Team, Vermont Agency of Transportation and Montpelier Police.

This accident is still under investigation.

Sgt. Ray LeBlanc
Patrol Commander
Troop A- Middlesex
1080 US RT 2
Middlesex, VT 05602
Ph: 802-229-9191
Fax: 802-229-2648


CASE#: 18A300770
TROOPER: Trooper Isaac Merriam
STATION: Middlesex
CONTACT#: 802-229-9191
DATE/TIME: 1630 hrs/18 FEB 2018
LOCATION: I-89, mm 58.4, Middlesex

OPERATOR: Belanger, Peter
AGE: 46
SEAT BELT? unknown
DESCRIPTION OF VEHICLE: 2018 Freightliner tractor
V # 1 / Peter Belanger / Sutton, VT / Age- 46 / SEAT BELT? unknown / deceased
V # 1/ Andrew Belanger/ Sutton, VT/ Age- 15/ SEAT BELT? Yes/ deceased
WEATHER: clear

Relevant Address(es):
Berlin, VT 05602 (Set as Local)
Middlesex, VT 05602 (Set as Local)
Waterbury, VT 05676 (Set as Local)
Montpelier, VT 05602 (Set as Local)
Sutton, VT 05867 (Set as Local)

Related Businesses
 Middlesex Volunteer Fire Department
14.9 miles
 Vermont State of--Transportation Agency, Operations, Hazardous Materials & Waste Coordinator
14.4 miles
 Montpelier City Police
14.5 miles
Waterbury Fire Department Main Street
0.3 miles
 Berlin Fire Department
17.7 miles
Vermont Agency of Transportation
14.2 miles
Vermont State Police, Middlesex Barracks
5.9 miles

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