How Chicken Fat Ended Up On The Streets Of Mississippi

In the middle of the afternoon in New Albany, Mississippi, the roads were strangely slick. The fire department received many calls, and Chief Mark Whiteside described the response.

"When officers arrived, they found a considerable amount of liquid on the roadway, causing a very slippery condition ... The trail of extremely slick substance was traced from the east side of the city, onto Interstate 22, exiting at Munsford, where it trailed back to Highway 30 west and out of town," Chief Whiteside explained (via New Albany Gazette).

There was a motor vehicle accident due to the mysterious liquid on the roads, but no injuries were incurred. Police, paramedics, and firefighters responding to the accident and general calls of concern about the oily roads were able to identify the liquid as chicken fat. Definitely not a normal thing to expect the highway to be coated in! This left everyone wondering how exactly this trail of chicken fat was laid across town and where it came from. Here's what happened.

What was the source of the chicken fat?

Where, you might ask, did this trail of chicken fat through the streets of New Albany come from? Why, a tank truck filled with chicken fat that had a mechanical malfunction, of course! Nothing out of the ordinary here.

New Albany Gazette reports that the truck was carrying chicken fat from a bio diesel facility. Chicken fat can be used as a bio fuel in place of petroleum products, as shown in studies using fat donated by Tyson Foods (via Renewable Energy World). The truck was eventually stopped because of the leak and the driver returned to New Albany to meet with officials and figure out what had gone wrong. Apparently, an issue during unloading left the top hatch of the truck open. The chicken fat was able to leak out of the top of the tank, leaving a trail behind the truck. "[W]hen the truck/trailer would stop and start again, significant amounts of product would leak from the trailer and out on the ground," Chief Mark Whiteside explained.

The highway's slippery roads were coated with sand and dirt to minimize slickness and the chicken fat was cleaned up as soon as possible with help from the Mississippi DOT, the bio diesel facility, county officials, and other concerned parties.