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I-78 Reopens Following Fatal Truck Fire

Rescue and clean up crews tend to a tractor trailer fire on I-78 westbound just beyond the toll plaza in Pennsylvania
Rescue and clean up crews tend to a tractor trailer fire on I-78 westbound just beyond the toll plaza in Pennsylvania (The Morning Call)

Interstate 78 westbound has reopened nearly eight hours after a fatal tractor trailer accident just past the toll bridge in Pennsylvania closed the roadway  and detoured traffic from New Jersey.

Rescue and clean up crews tend to a tractor trailer fire on I-78 westbound just beyond the toll plaza in Pennsylvania
Rescue and clean up crews tend to a tractor trailer fire on I-78 westbound just beyond the toll plaza in Pennsylvania (Twitter)

The road reopened just before 4 p.m. but delays go back to exit #12 (Perryville Road) according to New Jersey Fast Traffic.

2 EZ Pass lanes will be open; cash tolls will not be collected. Joe Donnelly, spokesman for the Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge Commission,  tells the Express-News that drivers will not face a violation for non-payment. “We are recording but we will not be charging violations or recording violations. And then we’ll look into collecting the tolls via mailing, possibly through license plate capture,” Donnelly told the newspaper.

A Shop Rite tractor trailer rear-ended a car stopped in a toll lane and then pushed it 200 feet beyond the plaza  around 8 a.m. according to the Express-Times killing the driver of the vehicle.  A witness told the newspaper the driver jumped from the truck as the truck caught fire and threw debris about 200 feet back to the toll plaza.

Donnelly says the accident  investigation is not complete.

Northampton County Coroner Zachary Lysek tells the Express-Times that no one has been able to look inside the car caught under the truck and determine if there are other victims.

 

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