Video: 5 hurt, 3 critically, after fuel tanker overturns, explodes on I-95 in Fla.
Delray Beach, Boca Raton and Palm Beach County fire rescue teams worked to put out the blaze, while EMS providers transported the injured
By Shira Moolten
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
DELRAY BEACH, Fla. — Three people are in critical condition after multiple vehicles caught on fire near the Atlantic Avenue exit of Interstate 95 when a fuel tanker truck exploded Tuesday afternoon.
Another two were taken to the hospital with injuries.
About 1:15 p.m., a passenger car traveled into the truck’s lane on the highway, and the two collided, according to the Florida Highway Patrol. The collision flipped the fuel truck onto its side, where it subsequently caught on fire. Officials said that a third vehicle was also involved, but did not say how. The cause of the crash is currently under investigation.
As the fire consumed the vehicles, pitch-black smoke billowed into the air, seemingly for miles.
“The amount of smoke just kept building up on top of itself,” said Delray Beach resident Emilee Silverman, who had been driving nearby when she saw the smoke, but didn’t know what had caused it. “I kept telling my friend that I really hope it’s just a building and that nobody was in it at the time.”
The fire was under control as of 2:25 p.m. Tuesday, but the crash site is still under investigation, Palm Beach County Fire Rescue said in a tweet. The fire shut down all lanes of the highway in both directions for several hours.
As of 4 p.m., southbound lanes had reopened but northbound lanes remained closed between Woolbright Road in Boynton Beach and Linton Boulevard in Delray Beach.
“Traffic delays will be severe, and will last for the foreseeable future,” the tweet said.
Delray Beach, Boca Raton and Palm Beach County fire rescue teams all worked to put out the fire, with Florida Highway Patrol and the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office also responding to the scene, Delray Beach Fire Rescue said.
This is a developing story, so check back for updates. Click here to have breaking news alerts sent directly to your inbox.