Tanker fire, fuel spill shuts down major Spartanburg intersection


SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) — A raging tanker fire caused by a crash blocked traffic at a busy Spartanburg intersection.

Firefighters and law enforcement responded to the fire near the intersection of Reidville and East Blackstock Road early Monday morning.

Long after the flames were out, drivers are being re-routed in that area.

That intersection finally opened, partially at 4:00 Monday afternoon.

Spartanburg Fire Marshal Will Smart said the tanker was filled with 8,700 gallons of fuel when it was in a crash that caused the fire.

“We didn’t even know it was a tractor trailer, the flames were that big we couldn’t see what was underneath there,” said Taylar Duncan, who lives near the accident site.

Officials estimate half the fuel, a combination of diesel and gas, leaked.

Spartanburg Fire Department said in a Facebook post that the tanker truck owner is determining how to pump off the remaining fuel and an environmental contractor will clean the soil and other contaminated areas.

No injuries were reported in the fire.

“As it got louder I thought it was bombs,” said Duncan.

Police said no one was hurt in the crash prior to the tanker fire.

“He pulled the truck away from the car so that he would minimize the damage or anybody getting hurt,” said Fire Marshal Smart.

Both drivers indicated to a police officer that they had a green light and there were no independent witnesses to the crash, Spartanburg Police Department said in a release.

While police could not determine which driver was at fault, police say the driver of the car was charged with driving under suspension and operating an uninsured motor vehicle.

Drivers are asked to avoid the area.

Police said drivers can take James Street, or Dorman Centre Drive, depending on their direction of travel.

The following detours were in place as of noon Monday:

Drivers traveling south on E. Blackstock Road towards John B. White Sr. Boulevard, will detour on Highway 29/W.O. Ezell Boulevard.

Drivers traveling north on E. Blackstock Road towards John B. White Sr. Boulevard, will detour on Hidden Hill Road.

Drivers traveling away from the city of Spartanburg on Reidville Road, will detour on Camelot Drive or Hidden Hill Road, while drivers traveling towards the city on Reidville Road will be detoured to westbound Interstate 26.

City of Spartanburg, Westview-Fairforest, North Spartanburg and Croft fire departments responded to the tanker fire.

Spartanburg County Emergency Management, HAZMAT, S.C. Department of Transportation, police and sheriff’s deputies are also on scene.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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