Overturned tanker leaking hazardous, flammable liquid; I-40 closed in Cheatham County

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CHEATHAM COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – An overturned tanker truck has closed Interstate 40 indefinitely in both directions Friday near the Dickson-Cheatham County line.

The crash involving the tanker and another vehicle happened around 9:30 a.m. just west of the Kingston Springs exit at mile marker 188.

According to the Tennessee Highway Patrol, the tanker is leaking “hazardous, flammable liquid.”

The driver of the tanker was pinned inside for more than an hour before being rescued. Authorities said in a news conference that his legs were pinned. He has since been airlifted to Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville. An update on his condition was not immediately known.

Sheriff Mike Breedlove said the tanker was hauling methacrylic acid, which is used in some nail primers to help acrylic nails adhere to the nail plate. The Nashville Fire Department also responded to the scene to help contain the spill.

“Our biggest priority was getting the driver out of the truck. Now that that’s done, we can work on safely containing this HAZMAT situation and getting the cleanup process started,” Lt. Travis Plotzer with the Tennessee Highway Patrol said.  

People in a half-mile radius were evacuated as a precaution. Eastbound traffic is being diverted at Exit 182. Westbound traffic is being diverted at Exit 192.

“We’re working to get it cleaned up quickly, but we’re not going to compromise anyone’s safety in doing so. That’s why we’re taking an aggressive approach turning traffic around,” Lt. Plotzer said. “We’re encouraging motorists to plan ahead and take alternate routes around this.”  

Several agencies responded to the scene to help with cleanup. HAZMAT personnel remains on the scene.

The roadway is expected to remain closed for several hours. The investigation is ongoing.

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