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Fuel spill drunk driving case inches forward

James Allan Charles Smith, the Nanaimo truck driver involved in the Goldstream River fuel spill on the Malahat Drive in April, is one step closer to facing a trial.

Defense and Crown lawyers held a pretrial conference at Western Communities Courthouse on Wednesday.

In a closed courtroom, defense lawyer Dale Marshall and Crown meet with a judge to discuss Smith’s charges of impaired driving, driving with a blood alcohol level above 0.08 and dangerous operation of a motor vehicle.

Smith, 34 at the time of the crash, was not present in court. Witnesses of the crash on the Malahat also attended the pretrial conference.

On April 16, 2011, at 6 p.m., a Columbia Fuels b-train fuel tanker lost control and plowed into a rock face just outside of Goldstream Provincial Park. The crash dumped 42,000 litres of gasoline and 700 litres of diesel into the river.

Another pretrial conference has been set for March 8 and the Western Communities Courthouse. Marshall said at that time a date may be set for a trial.

 

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