On Tuesday, a trucker on I-10 in Tucson overturned their vehicle. The crash created a hazmat situation that caused authorities to evacuate a one-mile area around the site. It also closed I-10 in both directions for some time afterwards. Sadly, the trucker lost their life in the accident.
The incident happened on Tuesday afternoon. Witnesses saw a box truck strike the median on the highway and then flip on its side. Video footage of the site after the crash shows the truck spewing orange smoke into the air.
The truck was traveling eastbound on I-10 in south Tucson. Although I-10 is a major thoroughfare for the region, it will remain closed for the foreseeable future. Authorities have not released an estimate for how long it will take for the road to reopen. This will make the area around the crash an absolute nightmare for anyone trying to get through. Drivers should plan to take a different route around the crash site.
Nitric Acid Causes Hazmat Situation After the Crash
Arizona public safety officials quickly closed off the area to traffic. They issued a shelter-in-place order for those who live or work within a one-mile radius of the incident. While the authorities were able to lift the order that night, they had to extend it the next morning. The order now reaches a full three miles in every direction. That’s because crews were unable to prevent the truck from leaking hazardous gas as they attempted to remove it from the road.
The authorities stated that the truck was carrying nitric acid. This inorganic compound is a common part of the process by which companies produce fertilizer. It is also highly corrosive and toxic to humans. You may know nitric acid as the acid that is commonly used in acid attacks. That’s how dangerous it is to human beings, which helps explain why the order is still in place.