A section of Interstate 95 in Philadelphia collapsed over the weekend following a tanker truck fire that broke out beneath the highway. Pennsylvania officials estimate that repairing the damage on the busy thoroughfare could take several months.
Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro announced at a news conference on Sunday afternoon that the collapse occurred around 6:20 a.m and the tanker was carrying 8,500 gallons of gasoline when it ignited. No injuries or fatalities have been reported.
The Governor is expected to declare a state of emergency on Monday, June 12. This declaration will enable the state to access federal funds to expedite the repair process. A team from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) will conduct a safety investigation at the collapse site. “The investigators are specialists in motor carrier and hazardous materials safety, highway and technical reconstruction and emergency response,” NTSB spokesperson Sarah Taylor Sulick told CNN.
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg confirmed that the Department of Transportation will offer any possible assistance with repairs and reconstruction. "Secretary Buttigieg has assured me that there will be absolutely no delay in deploying federal funds to help us swiftly rebuild this vital thoroughfare. I-95 is a critical roadway that supports our economy and plays an important role in people's everyday lives," Governor Shapiro emphasized.
By Sunday afternoon, firefighters had successfully controlled the fire. However, they remained on the scene as a precaution “because of the large volume of product that was involved,” Philadelphia Fire Department Deputy Commissioner Jeffrey Thompson said.
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