The Department of Public Safety reports this afternoon that Interstate 10 is closed to traffic in both directions after the crash of a hazardous materials truck sparked an intense fire.
The wreck happened just after 9 a.m. this morning when a semi-truck pulling two trailers cruised off the roadway, overturned in the right shoulder and burst into flame. The vehicle had a placard warning of corrosive substances, but DPS hasn't yet released what those were.
The intense fire quickly engulfed the truck, killing the driver and affecting powerlines. A passenger was injured; DPS hasn't released any names yet.
Traffic is moving -- no doubt verrrrry slowly -- on frontage roads. DPS advises that anyone traveling to or from Tucson this afternoon should take State Route 79. The agency doesn't know when the freeway will open back up.
UPDATE: The Arizona Republic reports the driver was a woman, and the injured passenger was her husband, who was in the semi-truck's sleeping compartment.
4 p.m. -- DPS releases names:
Driver/Deceased: Shari Wood Linder, 50, of Quinlan, Texas Co-Driver/Injured: Ricky Keith Linder, 53, of Quinlan, Texas
DPS also released more details:
All lanes of the interstate were open as of 3:40 p.m.
The truck is owned by Saia Trucking. The Linder's, who were married, were traveling from Blythe, California to El Paso, Texas. They have been driving together as a team for about ten years.
Ricky Linder remains in stable condition with non life threatening injuries at UMC Tucson.
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