First responders surround the overturned tanker (FOX Carolina/ April 10, 2017)
Crews continue to clean up the crash site on I-85 (FOX Carolina/ April 10, 2017)
TOWNVILLE, SC (FOX Carolina) -
Interstate 85 northbound was shut down for hours after a tractor trailer tanker overturned near mile marker 12 early Monday morning.
The crash happened just after 4 a.m. according to the SC Highway Patrol.
One lane briefly reopened around 5:45 a.m. to clear traffic back to Exit 11, where troopers said a detour was setup.
At the detour, first responders were directing northbound traffic off the interstate at Exit 11 and back on at Exit 14. Drivers could then take a right on SC 24 and then a left on SC 187 to return to I-85.
Firefighters said two cars initially crashed and the tanker came through just seconds later. The truck driver lost control of the truck while trying to avoid the wrecked vehicles in the roadway and overturned about a thousand feet from the initial crash site.
The truck driver was entrapped and had to be extricated from the vehicle. He was taken to the hospital with injuries.
The drivers of both cars were also taken to the hospital.
The tanker was carrying a flammable resin. Firefighters said a small amount of the material was leaking from the tank and must be pumped out and into another tanker before the wrecked truck can be moved. Hazmat crews were called in to oversee the process.
Firefighters said just before 7 a.m. that it may take 6 to 8 hours to clear the wreckage and ensure the interstate is safe to reopen. All northbound lanes were closed between Exits 11 and 14.