by Tony Romeo
HARRISBURG, Pa., (CBS) – Interstate 81 just north of Harrisburg will be closed at least through the weekend following a massive fuel tanker truck fire on a ramp above the highway. KYW Harrisburg Bureau Chief Tony Romeo reports.
The mishap occurred on the second level of a complex three-level interchange where Interstate 81 meets Route 22/322 north of Harrisburg. PennDOT Secretary Barry Schoch says burning fuel from the tanker on a ramp above 81 damaged spans above the ramp that will have to be removed.
“Interstate 81 we expect to be closed until we get those spans removed. And I said that the most optimistic scenario would be Sunday night. However, we’ve got severe weather coming in,” said Schoch.
Route 22/322 is also closed temporarily and detours may result in heavier traffic on other roads including the turnpike south of Harrisburg. The ramp connecting 81 to 22/322 toward the State College area could take months to repair. State officials compared the disaster to a tire fire that damaged I-95 in Philadelphia in 1996.