Propane Truck and Flat-Bed Truck Accident Closes I-79 for 12 Hours

by Duane Nichols on March 20, 2013

Propane Tanker Against Building

Propane Tanker Accidents Not Uncommon (See Photo)

I-79 Reopens More Than 12 Hours After Monongalia Co. Collision

Update: March 20, 2013,


Monongalia County Office of Emergency Management issued a statement that the highway reopened at 3:39 a.m. Wednesday, almost 12 hours after the collision occurred.

See WBOY story and video here.

Original Story: March 19, 2013,

An accident involving a propane tanker truck and a flatbed truck closed both northbound lanes of Interstate 79 near the 146 mile marker in Monongalia County Tuesday afternoon.

State troopers said a flatbed truck and a propane truck were headed north on I-79 around 2 p.m. near Goshen Road when the flatbed veered off to the left of the road, came back on, and hit propane truck. This caused the propane truck to go over an embankment on the right side of the road.

The driver of the propane truck was transported to a hospital by ambulance. It’s not known whether the other driver was transported from the scene.

Following the accident, both northbound lanes and one southbound lane on I-79 were closed, according to MECCA 911. One northbound lane has since reopened. Traffic is being detoured off exit 146 on I-79.

HAZMAT is bringing in emergency crews from the propane truck’s company from Charleston and Pittsburgh to help clear the scene. It will take those crews approximately five hours to clear the truck from the embankment, according to HAZMAT officials. Both northbound lanes of I-79 will be closed again late Tuesday evening.


Propane Truck Overturns in Lee Township, Michigan

By Josh Marshall, January 29, 2013,  Midland County, MI,


“The driver  is well trained and if he didn’t act she would have been dead and the kids would have been dead too,” said Kimmel Propane owner Scott Kimmel.


A near head-on collision left a propane truck overturned into a ditch leaking propane. “The safest thing to do is evacuate the immediate area on an incident like this with a propane tank involved at least a half mile in all directions,” said the Lee Township Fire Chief.


The propane company says less than a half gallon of product leaked out. When hitting the air the compressed gas grows exponentially, giving cause for evacuations.

“My wife had called and said volunteer firemen had shown up saying we would have to evacuate the house because of a propane leak,” said homeowner Chad Martin.

Firefighters said foggy conditions, high humidity and relatively low winds kept the propane from leaving the area.  “Propane is flammable it will travel distances if it finds a source of ignition with the proper air fuel mixture it will ignite,” said the Fire Chief.

Hours after the accident Chad Martin was still trying to get home just a block from the spill. “I called 911 to get a heads up on it and they told me it was going to be a while,” said Martin.

The propane truck was towed away around 3 PM and the area is safe. Now the owner of the propane company, Scott Kimmel is shifting his focus to the health of his driver who he says avoided a worse collision. “His leg is badly injured, they are working on it right now. But his first words were, is she alright?”

See other propane tanker accident pictures here.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Diane Pitcock March 21, 2013 at 11:16 pm

WV STATE Troopers told WDTV 5 News that a farm tractor and a water TANKER truck collided on Route 18 south this afternoon, about a mile past Meathouse Fork in DODDRIDGE COUNTY. The 34-year-old man driving the tractor was flown to the hospital with what troopers called significant injuries. MARCH 21, 2013.

WV needs more regulation, inspection and enforcement. And, what do we get …… a hiring freeze in state government!


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