Former boss, coworkers of defendant testify in Rockbridge County gas station explosion case

The 2019 explosion killed four people

The Commonwealth called up a coworker of Philip Westmoreland in the trial

ROCKBRIDGE COUNTY, Va. – It was another day of testimony in the case of the Rockbridge County gas station explosion in 2019 that left four people dead.

Phillip Westmoreland is charged with involuntary manslaughter.

Investigators said Westmoreland was the one who delivered fuel to the gas station ahead of the explosion.

The Commonwealth called Westmoreland’s former coworker, Larry Miller to the stand.

The court recognized Miller as a fuel distributor expert.

Miller was asked about the kind of safety concerns fuel delivery drivers should be on the lookout for when making deliveries at gas stations.

“There’s only so much a driver can be responsible for as far as expecting the station. He’s a driver, he’s not an engineer, he’s not hired to inspect his customers,” said Miller.

Miller also testified that when he previously delivered fuel to the South River Market, he had always delivered the amount that was ordered.

The defense echoed that statement and said that’s what Westmoreland did, too, on that day back in 2019.

The trial will continue next week with more witnesses expected to be called by the Commonwealth.


About the Author:

Sydney joined the WSLS 10 News team in June 2021.