On Thursday October 28, 1999 at 0631 the Wyers Cave Volunteer Fire Department was toned out for an auto mobile accident on North Bound Interstate 81 near the Agusta Rockingham County line. Engine 54 responded and moments later information was relayed over the radio that a tractor trailer hauling Hazardous materials was involved. Engine 54 arrived on scene to find a box trailer and tractor lying accross the Northbound lanes of Interstate 81 on its side. Upon further investigation they discovered a white and grey substance leaking out of the top of the trailer, there was a defenite odor with the substance and people were reportedly feeling ill from the fumes. They then realized that there was no access to the other side of the truck and trailer, so they requested the next engine company and rescue squad to respond to assit them. Bridgewater Volunteer Fire Company responded with Engine 109 and Rescue 15 responded with Medic 158 and Rescue 15. Engine 109 was instructed to come south down the north bound lanes and set up lights and a attack line away from the wreck. Hazmat 100 and Cheif 10 where requested. Upon arrival Hazmat 100 gained access to the trailer only to discover that it was hauling 16, 55 gallon drums of adhesives and sealants which where flammabel. After this the scene was considered safe and Bridgewater units cleared the scene at 1045 and Wyers Cave units turned the scene over to the Virginia State Police at 1200. The interstate remained blocked and closed till 2300 hours. Meaning that Interstate 81 was closed 16.5 hours before the truck could be removed.
FF Poetker