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All lanes on I-15 reopened after accident, authorities report

Updated Friday, June 22, 2012 | 5:21 p.m.

Accident shuts down I-15

All lanes of Interstate 15 near the Nevada-California state line are now open after a tractor-trailer overturned early this morning and spilled a hazardous load, officials say.

As of 4:40 p.m., the California Highway Patrol posted that all lanes were reopened on the interstate.

Trooper Jermaine Elliot of the Nevada Highway Patrol said traffic is still stop-and-go from the state line to St. Rose Parkway.

The California Transportation Department's District 8 office tweeted shortly before 1 p.m. today that the southbound lanes had reopened.

The accident occurred shortly before 6:30 a.m. on I-15 about 5 miles south of Primm, according to California Highway Patrol accident logs. About 4,100 gallons of ferric chloride were spilled when the truck overturned.

Ferric chloride is an industrial chemical often used in wastewater treatment. The chemical, also known as iron chloride, is corrosive and heats up when it comes in contact with water or acid, the Associated Press has reported. The chemical can cause burns, eye injuries and respiratory damage.

The California Highway Patrol closed I-15 in both directions for about 2 1/2 hours. By midmorning, southbound lanes continued to be closed but authorities reopened one lane of the interstate to northbound traffic shortly before 10 a.m. By noon, officials had opened one lane of southbound traffic. At the time, the California Highway Patrol reported, southbound traffic on I-15 was backed up a 7 miles, past Primm, Nev.

Caltrans said northbound traffic continued to be restricted to one lane near the accident site.

Trooper Jeremie Elliott of the Nevada Highway Patrol said motorists on their way west on I-15 out of Nevada had few options to bypass the congestion.

"They can try to go down U.S. 95 through Searchlight and take the Nipton cutoff, but that's quite a detour," he said.

California Highway Patrol was reporting some motorists had their way during the closure by off-roading through the desert.

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  1. Dammit, Birdie beat me to it.

  2. italiangal, actually Heretic did address that.

    If a truck transporting nuclear waster to Yucca Mountain overturned like this one did they would simple load the casks, which would be unbroken and undamaged, onto a different truck to continue the journey.

    No one has been able to show a single case where any accident, including setting a car bomb off under the truck, could result in damage to a transport cask in such a way that nuclear material could be released.

    As Heretic pointed out, nuclear material would be among the LEAST risky shipments made on the roadways and rails.

  3. Birdie: "who in their right frickin mind argues to have the most toxic crap on the planet buried in their back yard???"

    How about: people who realizes that this is a GLOBAL problem and that it has to go somewhere (just like garbage dumps, prisons, sewage treatment plants, etc.)

    How about: people who understand that the current answer (leave it where it is) is MORE dangerous?

    How about: people who understand that Yucca Mountain is the BEST of the available options?

    Basically, intelligent people who want real solutions to real problems. You can go back to your "dreamin" and leave THINKING to the adults.

  4. Next time I'll take the train :)

  5. BirdieLightVerse - poetry without substance

    italiangal: "How is one type hazardous material less hazardous than another. So what you are saying that used radioactive material is not a threat?"

    You apparently know nothing about the issue beyond the sound bites you've heard on the news.

    But I'll play along and try to educate you.

    Scenario: You have to travel across country and are given the choice between two cars to ride in. Once car has used radioactive material in a ceramic cask with multiple steel shells. The other contains 10 gallons on bromine in a thin walled glass container.

    In an accident one of those will kill you, the other will not.

    "In regards to the Yucca Mountain argument: NIMBY."

    Ah, NIMBY. The unreasoned position of those who care only about themselves. Being a part of society comes with responsibility as well as rights. NIMBY is the cry of the emotionally stunted endlessly insisting they receive the benefits, but someone else should have to pay the price.