Arizona - Truck hauling explosives catches fire

Discussion in 'Trucking Accidents' started by ninthstargod, Jun 17, 2006.

  1. ninthstargod

    ninthstargod Member

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    MESA - Mesa averted a major disaster early Thursday morning when a load of explosive material larger than the one used in the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing caught fire in the back of a tractor-trailer.

    The incident occurred about 4:30 a.m. on westbound Loop 202, near Country Club Drive and McKellips Road. "It was literally minutes away from a lot of human loss and a lot of damage," said Detective Tim Mason, a state Department of Public Safety spokesman.

    He said the amount of ammonium nitrate, 22,050 pounds, was four times as large as the load used by terrorist Timothy McVeigh in the April 19, 1995, bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah federal building, which killed 168 people.

    She said her son, A.J. Andresen, was traveling behind the rig in a pickup with other workers and saw the smoke. Andresen used a cellphone to call the truck's driver, Gary Shaw, and told him the truck was on fire.

    Mason said the load also included eight cases of dynamite, five electric blasting caps and 1,461 non-electric blasting caps.

    To trigger an explosion, the tractor-trailer would have to had been consumed by flames, Mason said. He said DPS experts believe that might have happened about four miles down the freeway.

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