Tanker Truck Fire on I-70 - Central County Fire & Rescue

Tanker Truck Fire on I-70

At approximately 4 a.m. on Monday, April 23 Central County Fire & Rescue (CCFR) responded to a semi-truck fire on the eastbound entrance ramp to Interstate Highway 70 at Veterans Memorial Parkway and Mid Rivers Mall Dr. in St. Peters, Missouri.

When crews arrived on the scene, they learned that the truck was transporting ethanol, a highly flammable liquid. The ethanol ignited when the tanker truck missed the entrance to the highway and rolled over, resulting in a significant flammable liquid fire.

Utilizing their Hazardous Materials (HAZMAT) training the team assessed the scene, isolated the area by closing the highway and the service road and requested additional assistance.

Because of the location of the fire and the highly flammable liquid they were dealing with, CCFR crews determined the best course of action was to contain the burning liquid and allow it to burn off.

“The truck was positioned away from any buildings, and the driver had safely escaped the scene. We needed to wait for the liquid to burn off so the ethanol would not remain on the roadway. If we had extinguished the fire the process of removing the liquid once the fire was extinguished would have resulted in a more dangerous situation, risking the potential of reigniting and injury to firefighters and bystanders. The cleanup process also would have taken several hours longer,” says CCFR Chief Dan Aubuchon.

The driver of the truck was transported to the hospital with minor injuries. I-70 reopened around 7:30 a.m., but the service road will remain closed for repairs from damage caused by the heat of the fire.

As part of a mutual-aid agreement multiple emergency response organizations responded to the fire including a specialized HAZMAT team. This team is comprised of personnel and equipment from numerous emergency response organization throughout St. Charles, Warren, and Lincoln counties that are specially trained and equipped to assist in mitigating incidents involving hazardous materials.

“When you are dealing with a situation of this magnitude access to additional resources ensures the safety of our community and first responders,” says Aubuchon.

We are thankful that no one was seriously injured and that we were able to work together to reopen access to the highway.”

Click here to see a map of where the fire happened.