I-85 reopens after tanker carrying explosive chemicals overturned in Anderson Co.

Tanker fire at mile marker 21 in Anderson Co. (Source: Tracy Phillips)

A section of I-85 in Anderson County that closed after a fiery tanker crash Thursday reopened early Friday morning.

Troopers said two crashes actually occurred on both sides of the interstate near mile marker 22. Smoke was visible over the interstate.

Witnesses shared photos of a tanker on fire after the crash.

Firefighters said the tanker was carrying 9,000 pounds of ammonium nitrate, a chemical fertilizer that is highly explosive. Residents in a one-mile radius of the tanker were evacuated. The evacuations were lifted around 8:20 p.m.

The Department of Health and Environmental Control and HAZMAT responded.

Troopers said the the left front tire of the tanker went flat and caused it to hit a Dodge pick-up that was pulling a trailer. The debris of the crash then hit a 1999 Jeep. The tanker went across the median and hit a 2003 Honda CRV and a Freightliner truck pulling a trailer, troopers said.

The driver of the tanker and the driver of the CRV were taken to the hospital.

Troopers said the following detours were announced as crews worked to clear the wreckage. Exit I-85 Southbound at Exit 27. Take a right on SC 81 and head north until the intersection with SC 8. At SC 8 take a left to head west and continue until the intersection with SC 88. At SC 88 take a left to head west and continue until the intersection with US 178. At US 178 take a left to head south back toward I-85. Enter I-85 southbound from US 178.The north and middle lanes of I-85 northbound re-opened around 7:40 p.m. The left lane of I-85 southbound re-opened around 8:10 p.m.

By 5 a.m. Friday all the wrecked vehicles had been towed away and all lanes had reopened.

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