Fiery two-vehicle collision - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Fiery two-vehicle collision

Update: The two drivers involved in a near-death collision are at a Tyler hospital tonight. A car and a 18-wheeler collided just north of Mineola on Highway 69 and Loop 564 around 2:30 p.m.

The 18-wheeler caught fire, leaving a trail of flames down 69 for about 1500 feet. Authorities closed down that portion of the road while they towed the vehicles and cleared the debris from the highway. Authorities say the driver of the 18-wheeler barely escaped the flames this afternoon. When his vehicle finally came to a stop, he was surrounded by flames. A firefighter says the driver then forced his driver side door open and jumped through the flames to get to safety. Officials say it looks like he may only have minor burns.

One of authorities' main concerns was that his tanker was full of milk, which they say is considered a hazardous material. According to Steve Finley with the Mineola Fire Department, milk is very acidic and can harm wildlife.

"It displaces oxygen and water so if it gets into creeks, streams, or a sewer plant, there is enough of a chemical imbalance to actually cause environmental damage," Finley says.

Highway 69 re-opened at 5:30 p.m. Thursday. Authorities say the driver of the tanker had just filled up with diesel fuel, which is what is responsible for such a large trail of flames. Both drivers were immediately transported to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries.


Update:  According to our reporter Shaley Sanders on the scene, highway 69 opened back up at 5:30.  Workers are still trying to clear up the wreck so drivers need to be cautious.

MINEOLA, TX (KLTV) - An 18-wheeler and a car have collided on north highway 69 between Mineola and Alba, according to the Wood County Sheriff's department. This is near the intersection of 69 and loop 564.

Traffic is reportedly backed up over a mile on either side of the crash site.  Travelers are advised to avoid the area.

We have a reporter heading to the scene. Stay with and KLTV news at 5 p.m. for further details.

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