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HOUSTON -- The owner of the tractor-trailer that crashed into an overhead sign on Interstate 45 Tuesday will be charged for the damage he caused, Texas Department of Transportation officials said.

All main lanes of Interstate 45 North at Airline were shut down for several hours after the wreck. Air 11 video showed the gravel truck's trailer leaning against the overhead beam that holds up the Airline exit sign. The cab of the big rig separated from the trailer and came to a stop ahead. Severed lines spread hydraulic fluid all over the freeway.

The driver said the dump truck s trailer began to rise as he drove down the freeway and he didn t notice until about 5:30 p.m. when it slammed into the freeway sign overhead. Investigators said he wasn t familiar with the truck and hit the wrong button and causing the trailer to rise.

No one was hurt, but traffic was backed up for miles after the wreck and it closed I-45 for eight hours.

TxDOT said it will charge the owner at least $100,000 to replace the sign over at the Airline drive exit.



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