Two people have died in a fiery wrong-way crash in Knoxville that closed lanes of Interstate 40.
Knoxville Police Department spokesman Darrell DeBusk told media the crash was reported about 1 a.m. Wednesday, just west of the Interstate 275 exchange. Initially, the interstate was closed in both directions, but westbound lanes reopened midmorning. Eastbound lanes remained closed.
Video: I-40 West back open through downtown Knoxville. Crews continue to work on I-40 East, which remains closed. pic.twitter.com/V5iEzqXke4
— Mark Nagi (@MarkNagiTDOT) July 20, 2016
DeBusk said a white SUV traveling west in the eastbound lanes collided head-on with a tractor-trailer. Both drivers were killed.
KPD Sgt. Nate Skellenger said he arrived at the scene to find the tractor-trailer engulfed in flames and wreckage strewn over interstate lanes in both directions.
Knoxville Fire Department Capt. D.J. Corcoran said the semi-truck was hauling a hazardous, flammable chemical, which was allowed to burn off. The scene was still being cleared as of late morning.