Cold, traffic endangers firefighters during I-65 truck fire

Photo courtesy of German Township Volunteer Fire Department.

It was so cold Thursday morning that German Township Volunteer firefighters saw their water freeze almost as soon as it hit the ground as they fought a truck fire on Interstate 65.

The firefighters report that the temperature was about 12 degrees just after midnight when they were called to a burning semi at Interstate 65 and U.S. 31. They found that the rear wheels of a semi had caught fire and the blaze had quickly spread to the trailer. The semi’s driver said he heard what sounded like an explosion near his rear tires and before he could get stopped he saw smoke and fire. The driver and a passenger in the cab’s sleeper got out of the semi without any injuries.

Firefighters were able to stop the blaze before it reached the inside of the truck’s cab. Both lanes of northbound I-65 were closed while the fire was extinguished. But the freezing water led to treacherous conditions. An INDOT salt truck was requested before all lanes were reopened.

The work was further complicated as many drivers chose not to switch lanes, coming close to hitting firefighters or the fire trucks.

Photo courtesy of German Township Volunteer Fire Department.