Talk about landing yourself in the tank!
Seagate police discovered 1,000 gallons of gasoline in the bed of a pick-up truck on July 17.
Two officers from the gated community’s public safety force said they stopped the driver on Atlantic Avenue near Beach 42nd Street at 4:45 pm for driving with transporter license plates. Transporter plates are used to allow car dealers to move vehicles between states. However, some fraudsters use these plates to avoid paying insurance and registration fees.
As the cops approached the car, they detected the aroma of spilled fuel.
“Gas was leaking all over the place,” recalled Lieutenant Adriel Caamano.
The police checked the truck’s capped bed and found a makeshift tank filled with gasoline. The tank had several holes, out of which gas was trickling out. Cops closed off the street and called the fire department’s hazardous materials unit to drain the basin. Police took the driver into custody for improperly transporting a dangerous substance.
Police would not release the man’s name or address, but said he was not a Seagate resident. The man claimed he was visiting a friend — but cops believe he was in the private community to sell the fuel, likely purchased in another state, at a discount rate.
“We guess that he brings it here to regular customers,” said Caamano.
Caamano said he did not believe this crime was connected to the theft earlier this month of 300 gallons of gasoline from a Kings Highway fuel-up station. He added that it was lucky that the suspect was carrying so much fuel, as a smaller quantity would have been more volatile.
“If it had been all vapors, that truck would have exploded,” the officer said.