- Associated Press - Monday, May 5, 2014

CLARKSBURG, W.Va. (AP) - After two young boys were crushed to death by a truck, relatives hoped the accident would force the family’s small West Virginia community to confront some of the problems created by heavy traffic from the oil and natural gas industry.

But Clarkesburg Police Chief Robbie Hillard said hundreds of tanker trucks carrying water and brine still come through the same intersection where the boys were killed, and the city can’t enact any changes because it’s a state highway.

The city is in the northern part of the state, near the Pennsylvania border.

“It’s just constant,” Hillard said of the truck traffic. “It’s all day long.”

Last March, the tanker truck overturned onto a car carrying 7-year-old Nicholas Mazzei-Saum and 8-year-old Alexander. Their father, William Saum, said the driver was given two traffic citations for running a stop sign but was never criminally charged.

The accident happened around 9 p.m. on a Saturday, just minutes from the family’s home.

Several other states that have seen a boom in oil or gas drilling have launched special programs to help communities cope with the surge in traffic.

Brent Walker, a spokesman for the West Virginia Department of Transportation, said the agency does not specifically track fatalities that may be related to the drilling boom.

Copyright © 2016 The Washington Times, LLC.

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