BAR HARBOR — A propane truck slid sideways while coming down a steep, icy driveway Wednesday afternoon and fell onto its side.
The accident on Pine Ridge Road, off Route 3 near the head of Mount Desert Island, was reported about 12:30 p.m. Firefighters rushed to the scene to help the driver and help prevent an explosion or fire from the propane. One lane of Route 3 was closed to give fire trucks and ambulances room to maneuver.
Firefighters carefully broke the truck windshield and used a hydraulic cutter to open the roof of the truck cab to get the injured driver safely out and into a waiting ambulance. He was taken to a local hospital.
The propane tank appeared not to be damaged and no propane leaked, Bar Harbor Fire Chief Matt Bartlett said. A large, specialized wrecker from T&W Towing in Newport was called in and the truck was towed to the oil company’s shop in Hancock.
Whether a propane tank needs to be emptied before it can be moved, Bartlett said, depends on the situation. In this case, he said, it was “about 30 percent full, and we determined with the right wrecker they could bring it back up onto its wheels which they did successfully.”
Firefighters had also contacted power company Emera Maine in case power on the road would need to be shut off for the wrecker to safely get into position. But the wrecker was able to stay far enough from the power lines that that wasn’t necessary.
Firefighters from Bar Harbor, Mount Desert, Southwest Harbor, Tremont and Trenton responded to the accident, as did Bar Harbor and Mount Desert police and the Northeast Harbor Ambulance Service.