After a three day closure of the 5 Freeway near the 2 Freeway interchange following a tanker truck crash and fire, Caltrans reopened lanes in both directions early Tuesday morning in Elysian Valley.
According to reports from the Los Angeles Fire Department, the crash that sparked the fire that closed the freeway took place at around 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, when a tanker carrying 8,500 gallons of gasoline lost a tire while driving through the transition tunnel from the northbound 2 to the northbound 5 Freeway, causing the vehicle to crash and roll onto its side.
A fire then broke out, fueled by thousands of gallons of gasoline, vaporizing the truck and inflicting significant damages to the tunnel. “In my 24 years, I’ve never seen damage to that extend,” said LAFD Captain Alicia Mathis, who fought the fire. Fortunately, the driver of the truck was able to escape. He suffered some injuries, but is expected to make a full recovery. No other vehicles were involved in the crash.
Following the crash, Caltrans shut down both directions of the highway indefinitely as engineers were called in to inspect the structural integrity of the road. Northbound lanes were first opened at 11 p.m. Monday night, and as of 5 a.m. Tuesday, all southbound lanes have been reopened as well. Only the transition tunnel remains closed. “We will continue working until we can open as many lanes as we can safely,” said Mike Miles, a Caltrans spokesman, on Monday. “The fire did some extensive damage to the tunnel, there it’s requiring quite a bit of work and investigation.”
The reopening of lanes comes as a major relief for morning commuters throughout Los Angeles, as side streets surrounding the 5 Freeway were becoming congested on a biblical scale.
Considering the circumstances it is fortunate that more serious damages were not inflicted on the road or to other drivers on the road at the time of the accident. If you or someone you know has been injured in a highway accident such as this, you should look to the help of legal representation. Depending on the particulars of your accident, you may be entitled to compensation, which we at AA Accident Attorneys can help you recover in full.
Our team of experienced legal professionals can lead you through the complicated legal process and get you the assistance you need to get back onto your feet. As always, we will not charge you anything for our services until your case is won. If we do not collect on your case, then you will not owe us a dollar. Call us today for a free evaluation and to learn what a Los Angeles car accident lawyer can do for you!