Chemical Spill Closes I-95 - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

07/25/05

Chemical Spill Closes I-95

I-95 just north of Hardeeville. I-95 just north of Hardeeville.

Part of Interstate 95 southbound in Jasper County just north of Hardeeville had to be blocked for about 13 hours when a tractor-trailer rig overturned.

It all started around 4pm yesterday. The tractor-trailer had a flat tire and was sitting in the emergency lane. A second truck sideswiped it, ripping the trailer open and flipping the other truck over, right across the usually busy lanes at one of the worst times of the day.

A car and a sport utility couldn't avoid the wreck, and wound up caught in the mess. The truck caught fire, igniting the SUV and the car.

What was in the truck worried emergency crews, who couldn't take any chances. "It is a powdery, white substance," said Hardeeville spokesman Rob Dewig. "We have done decontamination procedures on the people here, both civilian and emergency personnel."

It turns out, the powder was an acid that's only harmful if you actually touch it. So far, no serious problems have been reported for the people working the wreck.

They airlifted the trucker to the hospital for relatively minor injuries.

Traffic had to be rerouted around the site of the spill until about 5am this morning.

Reported by: Mike Manhatton, mmanhatton@wtoc.com

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