Route 1 was re-opened to traffic Friday afternoon after police and emergency crews cleaned up the scene of a fuel truck rollover that prompted police to evacuate nearby residents.

Maine State Police Lieutenant David Tripp reported that Route 1, which had been closed to traffic since the accident occurred just before 8:30 a.m., was re-opened at about 3:20 p.m.

Earlier in the day, Tripp explained that traffic was being re-routed onto the Perkins Road, through the Woods Road and back over to Rocky Road because the fuel truck, which was registered to Thompson’s Oil out of Waldo, was loaded with 4,250 gallons of gasoline at the time of the accident. Residents were evacuated as a precaution, Tripp said.

“If the gasoline did explode, nearby residents would be affected,” Tripp said, adding that the idea is to plan for the potential for a “worst case scenario” and hope for the best.

Tripp said Maine State Police responded to an 8:21 a.m. report of a fuel truck rollover on in Northport just north of where Route 1 intersects with Bayside Road.

The initial investigation at the scene indicated that the driver of a passenger car pulled out in front of the fuel truck, Tripp said, and the driver of the truck “took evasive action” in an effort to avoid hitting the car. That action, said Tripp, caused the fuel truck to skid off the road. The truck then rolled onto its side in the ditch, where it came to rest at a 45-degree angle.

Police have not released the names of the drivers involved, but Tripp said the drivers of both vehicles were traveling alone, and that neither one of them were hurt in the accident.

Tripp said several agencies responded to the scene, including Clean Harbors (which Tripp explained is the federal arm of the Department of Environmental Protection), the Maine DEP, the Northport Fire Department, the Searsport and Waldo County HazMat teams and the Waldo County Emergency Management Agency. Thompson’s Oil also has a HazMat team at the scene, Tripp said.

Officers with the Belfast Police Department assisted with re-routing traffic away from the scene.

Tripp credited the fuel truck driver for his quick action.

“The driver of the fuel truck took action to avoid what could have been much worse in terms of personal injury,” Tripp said.

The accident remains under investigation, Tripp said.