Posted: Dec 17, 2010 6:25 PM by Russell Jones
Updated: Dec 17, 2010 6:25 PM
PLAQUEMINE- A fiery collision between an 18-wheeler and a dump truck caused a lot of damage, but little injury this morning.
People could see the smoke billowing for miles after the wreck near a Dow Chemical plant. More than 50 firefighters were eventually called out to deal with the flames.
"When we left the fire station, we could see the smoke," said Plaquemine District fire chief Darren Ramirez.
Officials said the 18-wheeler was carrying plastics that could be more combustible than gasoline, so special crews were called in from Dow to help keep the fire under control.
Neither truck's driver were injured in the wreck; while crews battled the flames on their rigs the two men stood on the shoulder of the road, unharmed but in shock.
"The driver was hysterical," said 'Hooks' Forrest, who owns the dump truck. "He told me that the trucks were on fire both of them and they are completely demolished, and I said how are you talking to me and he said I'm okay, I said thank God."
"You expect the worst," said Trooper Russell Graham with Louisiana State Police. "You come out expecting that there's at least going to be some severe burns and injuries, but both drivers are standing up and walking around out here, so it's a good day."
The fire was out within an hour but smoldered long after. The southbound lanes of Highway 1 were eventually opened to let traffic through, but the northbound lanes remained closed while the trucks were recovered. Traffic officials said they expected the road to be fully opened between 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. Friday.
Neither driver was cited in the collision; State Police are still investigating the incident.