In July of 2018, we were called to a significant truck accident recovery incident on the I-90 near North Bend, Washington. A tractor-trailer had caught on fire and burned completely to the ground. Because of the range of contamination, it needed immediate spill response. Team Pro-Enviro arrived on the scene alongside Pro-Tow 24 Hour Towing, the Washington State Patrol and Washington State Department of Transportation.
As you can see from the photos, the fire and accident left an incredible mess. We needed a lot of extra equipment and relied on a range of companies to help us out with that. We couldn’t have completed this truck accident recovery without the help from Miller Industries, Caterpillar, Bobcat Company, Advanced Environmental Solutions, and PGH Excavating. With all-hands-on-deck, this burned-out mess was cleaned up, and spill response was completed fast. We were able to get all lanes of traffic open ahead of schedule thanks to our professional team!
Why Do Trucks Catch Fire?
There are many common reasons why a truck might catch on fire. There could be arcs on the starter, alternator cable, or even the positive feed wire that runs into the cabin. There can be flammable materials resting against something that gets too hot or rubs on the fuel line that result in a leak that can catch fire. Sometimes there is too much load on the electrical circuits, and it can start a spark.
A tire can even catch on fire if they’re not appropriately inflated, flat, or wearing unevenly. Leaky wheel bearings can catch fire, and so can overheated brakes. Even going over combustible road debris can also cause a fire.
Preventative Maintenance is Key
To avoid this hazard, make sure every truck in your fleet undergoes regular, preventative maintenance. You should have circuit breaker protection on anything that supplies or feeds power like your alternator, cabin power, and trailer feed. For safely, ensure your cables are insulated and keep all combustible parts away from the engine tunnels and exhaust system.
Don’t exceed the recommended electricity load on your circuits, check fuel lines, oil lines, tires, and wheel bearings regularly. Our team at Motorplex in Auburn and Spokane can help you with preventative fleet maintenance. Stay safe!