After the accident and gas spill Tuesday afternoon, we researched other wrecks that have happened in Central New York. Combing the archives of, we came across several big stories from the 1960's-1970's.

1968 Truck Accident
Utica Daily Press via Fulton History

One story, from the Utica Daily Press in February 1968, involved a tanker truck, filled with fuel oil, whose cab and tanker became detached. It occurred on the north bound lanes of the North Genesee Street bridge, of course right at the 5pm rush hour. Luckily no one was injured and none of the fuel oil spilled, but traffic was brought to a stand still as drivers tried to figure out alternate routes. Sound familiar?

1972 - Truck Crash
Utica Observer-Dispatch via Fulton History

In March 1972, the Observer Dispatch reported that a milk tanker truck crashed into a home off Route 8 in the Town of Paris. The truck apparently left the roadway and ripped the front porch right off the house. The driver wasn't injured, and the owner of the house, who was home at the time, was reported to be safe as well.

1976 - Truck-Van Collision
Clinton Courier via Fulton History

On a Thursday morning in November 1976, the Clinton Courier reported an accident involving a loaded oil tanker and a van. Allegedly the van slid into the oncoming lane and the truck driver was unable to avoid a head-on collision. The tanker flipped over and brought down a power pole at the intersection of Robinson Road and Utica Street in Clinton. Both drivers were brought to St. Luke's Hospital after they were freed from the vehicles. It took the rest of the morning and part of the afternoon to clear the scene and reopen the streets to traffic.

Utica National
Google Street View

There have been several major truck accidents on Route 12 North, coming down the hill in front of Utica National Insurance. That's why they added so many signs and truck ramps leading up to and on the hill. Yet as recently as 2007 there was a truck crash there. Here's the New Hartford Police Department's press release:

The crash occurred on June 22nd at 4:00pm when a northbound tractor-trailer driven by 40 year old Larry T. Jones was unable to stop after descending a six-mile hill on Route 12. The tractor-trailer went through a red traffic light at the intersection with Genesee Street before crashing into the barrier. Jones was not injured and no other vehicles were damaged in the crash. Property damage to the Utica National property included damaged landscaping and minor damages to the barrier. The truck sustained heavy damage and had to be towed from the scene. At the time, Jones was issued a summons for having inadequate brakes after police discovered that the trailer service brakes had been disconnected. (Town of New Hartford Police Department)

Luckily, in all these accidents there were no serious injuries. But it goes to show that such accidents have been causing traffic headaches in Central New York for a long time. Were you stuck in the Clifford Fuel tanker traffic tie-up? What alternate routes did you take, and how bad was the traffic on those local roads?


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