Interstate wreck snarls traffic in county

BY BRUCE BRANUM

The Greenville Standard

 

A slew of wrecks occurred this past week in Butler County. At least five congested traffic, but a sixth snarled traffic from Georgiana to Ft. Deposit.

The sixth wreck, which involved an overturned 18 wheeler trailer on Interstate 65 early Friday morning at the 129 mile marker, involved the possibility of a hazardous chemical spill and prompted officials to close both north and south lanes of I-65 between the Greenville 130 and Georgiana exits.

It also prompted the closure of Greenville High School, which was in site of the overturned trailer.

According to a released statement by Greenville Police Chief Justin Lovvorn, “Officers received a call at approximately 2:05 a.m. this morning of an overturned 18 wheeler on I-65 southbound at the 129 mile marker.  The 18 wheeler was found overturned in the middle of the southbound lanes.

“The two occupants of the semi-truck were unharmed.  The driver stated that as he was travelling southbound around the 129 mile marker, he then left the roadway and went into the median.

“He then steered back across the southbound lane and into the grass before attempting to turn back onto the roadway once again causing the trailer to turn over in the southbound lane.”

After officers arrived at the scene, it was determined that the trailer contained 55 gallon drums of Cyclohexanol.

According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, Cyclohexanol is an alcohol that consists of cycloheaxane bearing a single hydroxy substituent. It has a role as a solvent. It can irritate and burn the skin and eyes.

Breathing Cyclohexanol can irritate the nose and throat while high exposure can cause headache, nausea, vomiting, dizziness and passing out. It is a clear, colorless, combustible liquid used primarily in manufacturing nylon polymer, plastics, and solvent applications.

Lovvorn added in his statement, “A decision was made, after learning the contents of the trailer and observing the visible damage to the trailer, to treat it as a worse-case scenario and maximize our perimeter to ensure the publics’ safety.  The Montgomery Fire Department’s Haz Mat team was requested and responded to assist in the cleanup.

“The inside of the trailer was then assessed by the Hazardous Material team in protective gear.  It was at this time that we realized that the spill was not as bad as anticipated.

“We then began to scale back our perimeter and move forward with the cleanup efforts.”

Lovvorn also thanked the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency, the Alabama Department of Transportation, the Butler County Emergency Management Agency, the Montgomery Fire Department Hazardous Material Response Team, city crews, and the Butler County Sheriff’s Office for all their assistance.

The north bound lanes of I-65 were reopened by 8:30 a.m. while the south bound lanes remained closed until 2 p.m.

 

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