Woman causes chemical spill near Lake Tahoe after falling asleep at wheel | SierraSun.com

Woman causes chemical spill near Lake Tahoe after falling asleep at wheel

TAHOE VISTA, Calif. — A local woman who fell asleep at the wheel Wednesday caused a hazardous chemical spill off Lake Tahoe's North Shore after crashing her car into a parked trailer, officials said.

California Highway Patrol personnel responded to the incident at about 3:50 p.m. Wednesday on Highway 28, near the Estates Drive intersection in Tahoe Vista.

Jessie Fidler, 24, of Tahoe City was traveling eastbound on 28 in a 2001 Volkswagen when she fell asleep and drifted off the highway, said CHP-Truckee officer Pete Mann.

Fidler suffered minor cuts in the crash and was not transported to the hospital.

About 55 gallons of isocyanate came out of the trailer, Mann said. The Placer County Office of Emergency Services arrived and had the spill cleaned up in about three hours; nothing leaked into Lake Tahoe.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, isocyanates are a family of highly reactive, low-molecular-weight chemicals widely used in the manufacture of foams, fibers and coatings, such as paints, varnishes and elastomers.

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They are increasingly used in the automobile industry, autobody repair and building insulation materials.

Neither alcohol nor drugs are considered a factor in the crash, Mann said.

Fidler was not cited, nor does she face charges for careless driving.