Tractor trailer crash closes I-80, forces evacuation

WEST MIDDLESEX, Pa. (AP) - A tractor trailer carrying hazardous material crashed and caught fire Sunday, causing the closure of Interstate 80 and the evacuation of about 35 homes, authorities said.
Police said the truck was heading east when it hit a bridge
abutment around 5:45 p.m. about 60 miles northwest of Pittsburgh, near the Ohio border.
It was carrying about five pounds of tert-butyl hypochlorite, which emergency workers decided to let burn, said Tom Meyer, supervisor of Mercer County 911. Meyer said he did not know what the material was used for.
During the clean-up, state police had to close the interstate from Sharon to an exit near Hubbard, Ohio.
About 35 homes were evacuated for about 3½ hours, Meyer said.
The westbound lanes were reopened around 9:30 p.m. and state police said the eastbound lane was expected to be reopen sometime Monday morning.
The driver, whose name was not immediately available, was taken to a hospital, but Meyer said the driver's injuries did not appear to be serious. No other injuries were reported, he said.
(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)