BELL (CBSLA.com) — The 710 Freeway was closed in both directions in Bell following a tanker truck fire Sunday afternoon.
The tank caught on fire reportedly after overturning around 3:30 p.m. on the southbound lanes near Florence Avenue, said the LA County Fire Department.
The truck — containing more than 8500 gallons of gas — was fully engulfed. The smoke and flames could be seen for miles.
A SIG Alert was issued around 3:45 p.m.
Around 6:30 p.m., the CHP said the lanes would be closed “indefinitely” as the fire is believed to have caused some structural damage to the road.
CBS2’s Cristy Fajardo reporting from the scene said several HazMat crews were there trying to clean up the debris and gas.
She also said the truck’s driver was pulled to safety and was talking to investigators about the cause of the crash.
Fajardo spoke to one driver who was on the northbound lanes when he was shocked by what was unfolding in front of him.
“I couldn’t believe it,” said Chris Lerista, “Nobody could get through. The flames were very high. I couldn’t tell you how high, but, really high.”
Some motorists were stranded for upwards of two hours.
Around 9 p.m. the CHP announced the northbound lanes had reopened. They also said, “all southbound lanes closed until further notice.”
For the latest on traffic on the 710 and in the area, listen to KNX 1070.