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Tanker Crash Stalls I40 Traffic for Hours

By Deneisha Pearson
By dpearson@wbbjtv.com

HENDERSON COUNTY, Tenn. - A tanker crash shut down Interstate 40 for almost 12 hours, Monday. No one was seriously hurt, but thousands of gallons of fuel spilled.

Brad Riggle, a driver headed home to Texas, said he saw the whole thing. Riggle said the driver appeared to drift. When he tried to get back on the road, he lost control.

“He was trapped underneath the seat," said Riggle. "A few of the other truck drivers and myself helped him out and pulled him out from under and put him on the hood of his cab." Riggle went on to say they carried him down the road a little bit to get away from the fuel spill.

The fuel spill clean up kept travelers at a standstill, around the crash site at mile marker 103. Henderson County Fire Chief Lynn Murphy says the tanker was hauling more than 8,000 gallons of gas, when it crashed just after 9:30 a.m. "And we're estimating that about 4,000 gallons of gasoline was spilled on the ground, before the leak was stopped,” said Murphy.

Most was contained to a drainage ditch. Chief Murphy says the environmental impact will not be significant.

Drivers had to be detoured through Lexington until I-40 reopened just after 8:00 p.m.

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