A semi-truck fire on San Francisco’s Bay Bridge Monday caused massive traffic delays as vehicles backed up while the fire was put out.
The truck driver apparently said that he pulled over on the bridge to change a tire about 5:45 a.m. when he realized his engine was on fire, the San Francisco Gate reported
. He jumped out and ran away from the truck, which became completely consumed by the flames.
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Online photos and footage showed a fireball rising in the air above the bridge, and it was reported that two lanes were blocked as fire crews worked to control the fire, the Gate said.
KGO-TV reported that two westbound lanes on the bridge remained closed
Monday afternoon as officials tried to clear the truck remains off the road.
The television station reported that truck driver Sergio Mata said the fire happened really quickly, surprising him. He felt a “wobbly tire” and thought maybe the tire heated up and spread to the engine compartment, starting the fire.
The truck was carrying sushi, rice, and vinegar.
California Highway Patrol Officer Laura Clare said the truck was heavy because of all the water sprayed on the fire and it was going to take a long time to cut it in half and clear the road, KGO-TV said.
The accident happened on the morning that a BART strike was supposed to begin, although it was called off
. It was a good thing, too, the Gate said, because thousands of extra cars would have been on the road and the bridge traffic would have been unusually high.
As it was, it took commuters about an hour longer to cross the bridge because of the accident, the Gate said.
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