Tanker truck explodes after collision on Hwy 20

NEVADA CITY, Calif. January 31, 2018 – A head on collision between a tow truck truck and a tanker truck on Hwy 20 between Yuba Gap and Zeibright Road resulted in an explosion of the tanker truck. This is a developing story, we are posting updates as we can confirm facts.

CAL FIRE photo

January 31, 2018 at 8:00 PM Per CAL FIRE NEU: Zeibright incident (Final) Placer Co Hwy 20 west of I-80 near Bear Valley. All CAL FIRE resources released. Federal DPA, FRA/SRA, Placer Co Fire Department / TNF Vehicle accident w/ two commercial vehicles Hwy 20 closed for several hours. All hazards have been contained.

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January 31, 2018 at 4:06 PM Hwy 20 is expected to reopen around 11:00 pm tonight after the CHP investigation has concluded.

January 31, 2018 at 3:51 PM Per PG&E spokesperson Brandi Merlo, “Out of caution, PG&E cut water flows into the Drum Canal in the event any gas or oil spilled into the canal. We also shut down the Drum Powerhouse so that any possible contamination could be contained to the Drum Forebay. There is no indication that any fuel or oil entered the Drum Canal. Nonetheless, PG&E crews are working with Caltrans and CAL FIRE to help contain any contamination spilled from the accident. At the request of California Fish and Wildlife, PG&E has also cut its flows into the Bear River while clean up takes place. We will continue to monitor the situation for possible contamination.”

CAL FIRE photo

January 31, 2018 at 4:45 PM CAL FIRE NEU update: Fire mitigated, Haz Mat controlled in Bear Creek & river.  Commercial cleanup company on site.

Per Caltrans, Hwy 20 will remain closed at least until 11:00 pm from the Town of Washington to the junction of I-80 due to the ongoing CHP accident investigation and cleanup operation.

CAL FIRE photo

January 31, 2018 at 3:33 PM The fire has been fully extinguished. Mop-up and spill containment are underway. Numerous firefighters still assigned to the incident. Hwy 20 remains closed. Detour from Nevada City via Hwy 174 to I-80 or Hwy 49 to I-80.

PG&E reports no contamination has been found in the canal connecting to the Bear River. More details to follow shortly.

CAL FIRE photo

January 31, 2018 at 3:27 PM Per CAL FIRE NEU: Firefighters assisting CHP are making good progress on containing the spilled contents of a tanker trunk on Hwy 20 near Bear Valley in Placer County. Haz Mat crews from CAL FIRE, Cal Trans and the tanker company will be on scene for an undetermined amount of time.

January 31, 2018 at 3:21 PM Booms have been deployed on the Bear River as a precautionary measure.

January 31, 2018 at 2:56 PM Per CHP Gras Valley: Gold Run CHP is investigating a possible multi-fatal collision on Highway 20 (SR-20) east of Nevada City nearing Interstate 80. SR-20 will be closed for an undetermined duration due to roadway structural damage. Please use alternate routes to Interstate 80.

January 31, 2018 at 2:46 PM PG&E has shut down the canal from Spauliding to the Bear River as a precautionary measure, there is no indication any fuel has spilled into the Bear River. NID confirms the water supply for the greater Nevada City/Grass Valley area is unaffected by a potential spill.

January 31, 2018 at 1:30 PM Per CHP, the tanker truck is owned by Williams Tank Lines out of Stockton. The tow truck is from Kilroys, out of Grass Valley.

January 31, 2018 at 1:29 PM Sadly, both drivers did not survive the accident and explosion per a CAL FIRE Battalion Chief on scene.

Photo courtesy Thomas Scully

January 31, 2018 at 1:16 PM Per CAL FIRE NEU, approximately 12K – 15K gal of fuel leaking and on fire.

January 31, 2018 at 12:46 PM NID confirms the Drum Canal has been shut down, to avoid any possible contamination in the Bear River. The Hydro Manager is en route to the scene. According to preliminary reports, the  South Yuba canal has not been affected. Confirmation as soon as NID personnel conducts an inspection.

January 31, 2018 at 12:14 PM Placer County OES, Truckee Fire with a specialized engine and Placer County haz-mat team are on site to assist CAL FIRE and CHP. NID is dispatching personnel to check for possible impact on the water system.

January 31, 2018 at 12:04 PM Residents of the Town of Washington can access Hwy 20 from Nevada City. All other traffic is being detoured.

CAL FIRE photo

January 31, 2018 at 11:55 AM According to the CHP Gold Run PIO, the accident involved a tow truck and a tanker truck carrying gas. Several hazmat teams are on scene, as well as CAL FIRE and Tahoe National Forest resources.

Hwy 20 will be closed for the foreseeable future. The extent of injuries to the drivers is unknown at this time.

January 31, 2018 at 11:43 AM CAL FIRE NEU is assisting CHP with tanker truck accident on Hwy 20 above Nevada City.

January 31, 2018 at 11:39 AM CHP Update: SR20 Is closed from Uren Street in Nevada City to I-80 due to a collision involving a tanker truck. there is no estimated time of reopening. motorists trying to access Nevada City should take I-80 to SR174 to SR20/49 jct or I-80 to Auburn to SR49 jct north, big rigs and oversized loads should check with CHP Commercial Division or Caltrans permits for appropriate trucks routes.

Photo courtesy Linda Horning

January 31, 2018 at 11:09 AM Hwy 20 is closed between Nevada City and the junction of I-80 after a head-on collision between a pickup and a tanker truck carrying gas. The tanker has exploded and emergency services are on scene.

There is significant danger and firefighters, Environmental Health and Fish&Wildlife are on scene.