91 Freeway Closure

The Greater Los Angeles Area has been a site of havoc as a tanker truck exploded, closing the district’s busiest freeways on Friday.

Hundreds of thousands of commuters and motorists trying to get a start on their Memorial Day weekend were affected. Reports said three persons were hospitalized for minor to moderate injuries, while the truck driver was not affected.

According to witnesses, the flames went as high as 100 feet, creating a column of smoke which was visible for about 30 miles to the east. Firefighters let the blaze burn itself out, which took several hours.

Apparently, the truck, loaded with 8,800 gallons of gasoline, overturned and burned in the eastbound lanes of the 91 Freeway in Corona, backing up the traffic for miles in Riverside, Orange, and San Bernandino.

This road mishap caused the California Highway Patrol to close the eastbound lanes of the freeway at Green River Road. For safety reasons, CHP closed the westbound lanes at 71 Freeway and the southbound 71 at Euclid Avenue.

At around 2:45 p.m., all of 91’s westbound lanes were reopened, while three eastbound lanes were reopened at 7 p.m. The carpool land and two other lanes, however, will remain closed until the California Department of Transportation can inspect the pavement for damage and make repairs if necessary.