HOUSTON A tanker truck carrying 8800 gallons of gasoline was burning Friday after a crash on the East Beltway northbound feeder road at US 90.
The 18-wheeler had just filled up and was carrying 8800 gallons of gasoline when the wreck happened at about 8:30 p.m.
Deputies said the truck driver was trying to make a U-turn from the southbound to the northbound feeder. Witnesses said he was going about 30 to 35 miles an hour and flipped. Immediately after it flipped to its side it burst into flames and multiple explosions rocked the area.
When the flames erupted the truck driver smashed out the windshield and leapt out of the tanker. A witness who was waiting at a red light only a couple hundred feet away couldn t believe his eyes.
I hear a big bang, as I look up I see the tanker roll over and as soon as I looked up I saw it go in flames. I immediately got on the phone and called 911, said Orlando Amador. I told dispatch I didn t think the driver had made it out.
The tanker driver works for a company called Coastal Transport. The Harris County Sheriff s Office said he was headed to make a delivery at Tidwell and the Beltway.
He was rushed to a nearby hospital for treatment. Deputies said, aside from burn marks on both his arms, it looks like he ll be OK.
He s very lucky. Something like that, something that blew up, you wouldn t think he would come out alive. Today was his lucky day, Amador said.
No one else was injured and investigators said it s a good thing that other drivers weren t closer to the 18-wheeler truck.