Freeway truck fire keeps crews busy overnight

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CFA crews have worked hard to extinguish a significant truck fire that kept the Western Freeway near Ballan closed for many hours.


Crews were first notified at 10.38pm to reports of a truck fire, and District 15 Acting Assistant Chief Fire Officer (A/ACFO) Chris Bigham said they got early information from the driver.

“We were talking with the driver who said he saw flames from the back of his trailer, pulled over, and by the time he disconnected the prime mover both trailers were on fire.

“That left a truck fire on the side of freeway which caused a grassfire as well.

“The truck was carrying a mixed load, including general goods as well as some flammable items and chemicals which caused some explosions that were heard across the community.”

A/ACFO Bigham praised the work of crews at a difficult scene.

“They established an exclusion zone away from the truck, managed breathing apparatus within that zone, and established a consistent water flow to cool that fire which meant the explosions abated.

“We had a local contractor who brought in an excavator and pulled the load apart so we were able to access the interior of the load.

“There was an advice message to the community about the fire, and there were mitigation actions taken to prevent damage to the environment.”

A/ACFO Bigham said the cause is believed to have been from mechanical failure with the brakes on the trailer.

“After about three or four hours, the fire was completely extinguished and the load was deemed safe for a clean-up crews to begin removing it,” he said.

Crews worked with partner agencies including FRV, Ambulance Victoria, VicPol and local council to clear up the scene.


Submitted by CFA Media