Major Damage Results from Semi Truck Fire


Published on January 10 2019 1:47 pm
Last Updated on January 10 2019 1:47 pm
Written by Greg Sapp

Effingham firefighters were on scene for more than an hour at a semi truck fire along the interstate outside town Wednesday afternoon.

Firefighters were called to the rig, which was fully involved in fire at 4:21pm. The rig was along the shoulder of westbound I-70, about a half-mile west of the south tri-level. The fire originated at the rear drive tires of the semi tractor. When firefighters arrived, the rear axle and tires were burning with fire extension into the front of the trailer.

The driver told firefighters he smelled something hot and pulled over onto the shoulder of the roadway and that's when one of the rear tires exploded. Firefighters made their way into the trailer of the rig where it was discovered animal feed bi-product that was being hauled was burning and smoking in the front of the trailer. Crews worked to remove the bi-product from the interior of the trailer and used a saw to cut a hole and pour water into the trailer to extinguish the fire. Crews used a thermal imaging camera to monitor elevated temperatures in the trailer.

Watson Fire Protection District was called to assist with a tender to maintain a water supply, IDOT provided arrow boards to direct the traffic flow, and Illinois State Police handled the scene.

Damage to the truck, the trailer and the product inside the trailer was estimated at $20,000.

Firefighters cleared the scene at 5:25pm.