A truck burned down on Seattle's I-5 this morning and exacerbated the misery of many morning commutes, but the odd thing about this car-b-que is the burning trail of fuel pouring off the truck. Diesel needs pretty extreme levels of heat to ignite... making this a rare sight indeed.
The Washington State DOT's Twitter account identified the river of fire as "burning diesel." We've seen some wacky tweets from traffic officials in that corner of the country, but I don't think any semi-truck has run gasoline since the early 1950's; there's not much else that the burning truck could be puking in that kind of volume.
MyNorthwest.com ran some images of a burning flatbed earlier, but we've since confirmed that was a different truck. The rig that's overturned and caught fire Monday, May 12th on Seattle's I-5 appears to be an eight-wheeler carrying gravel, which it's spilled all over the highway.
Black smoke eclipsed the city of Seattle from the road, turning to white steam when fire fighters started getting water on the blaze. WSDOT reports that the driver and others were able to get out before the cab was consumed by flames, and even made an attempt to arrest the fire themselves with the truck's hand-held extinguishers. Obviously, they were hopelessly inadequate.
At present fire fighters have the incident under control but the road is still backed up for three miles.
We're not sure how the fire started yet, but I can't wait to hear your theories on how a river of diesel might have managed to keep burning so far from the epicenter of the blaze.
Images: Washington State DOT