MT. VERNON — —
Traffic was backed up, and northbound Interstate 57 closed for a period on Thursday morning, following an incident involving a semi fuel spill in a construction zone.
Mt. Vernon Fire Department was dispatched at 9:16 a.m. following the report of a semi colliding with an E.T. Simonds Construction Co. truck, which was parked in the driving lane with an arrow board activated. The arrow board was cautioning motorists to move to the passing lane of Interstate 57 in the construction zone near the I-57/I-64 split.
According to Illinois State Police and MVFD, 54-year-old Alex V. Kennedy of Powder Springs, Ga., was following two truck tractor semi trailers northbound in the driving lane at mile post 95. The two semi drivers ahead of Kennedy moved from the driving lane to the passing lane. Kennedy saw the parked Simonds vehicle, but was unable to change lanes or stop in time to avoid hitting the truck. The collision caused the fuel tank to rupture on the passenger side, according to a MVFD spokesman, and spilled approximately 700 to 100-gallons on fuel onto the roadway.
The fire department contained the diesel duel and Freeman Environmental, based in Herrin, cleaned up the spill.
No injuries were reported. Kennedy was ticketed for failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident, according to an ISP news release.