Dense, freezing fog and slick roads are to blame for a 9-vehicle chain-reaction crash north of Madras Tuesday morning that closed Highway 26 for hours.
The crash involved a tanker carrying 10,000 gallons of jet fuel, which caught fire before firefighters were able to quickly knock it down.
The initial crash happened just after 8 a.m. at Highway 26 and NW Boise Drive, blocking the west bound lanes of the highway. While Jefferson County Fire Department was en route, they reported very slippery road conditions and visibility was less than a quarter mile.
Just south of the scene of the crash, fire crews noticed multiple vehicles off the road and one with rear end damage.
Jefferson County EMS stopped to check for patients and took one person to the hospital.
Law enforcement and ODOT were already on the scene when another vehicle came close to crashing into the original crash scene, according to the fire department. Meanwhile, a semi carrying 10,000 gallons of jet fuel crashed into the scene and began leaking fuel.
Fire fighters were able to remove the driver before it caught fire. Crews were able to knock down the fire with an extinguisher to keep it until check. Hazmat crews spent hours on the scene cleaning up the spill.
In all, six passenger cars and three semis with trailers were involved in the crash with two people going to the hospital. No word on the extent of their injuries.
Image courtesy Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office.