I-69 remains closed in both directions after overturned semi found to be hauling 'dangerous goods'

A semi truck that flipped over and closed down both directions of I-69 on Saturday was discovered hauling "dangerous goods," authorities in Lapeer announced.
Photo credit Michigan State Police - Bay Region

LAPEER TOWNSHIP (WWJ) - A semi truck that flipped over and closed down both directions of I-69 on Saturday was discovered hauling "dangerous goods," authorities in Lapeer announced.

According to the city of Lapeer Fire and Rescue Department, the truck overturned just before 5 a.m. on the westbound side of I-69 between M-24 and Lake Nepessing Road.

As deputies from the Lapeer County Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene, they “quickly realized that the semitruck was hauling dangerous goods and requested additional support,” the fire department added.

"Due to the volatility of the products being transported by the Ontario based hauler, AirTime Express, both Eastbound and Westbound I-69 are currently closed," the department continued. "The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) and Lapeer County Road Commission have temporary detours in place."

Fire crews were able to establish a perimeter and contain the leaking fluids coming from the engine compartment, officials stated. At this time, the Michigan Spill Response are safely offloading the hazardous materials, which the department said was identified as 1-methoxy-2-propanol that was stored in 15 55-gallon drums.

According to Cameo Chemicals, a database run by NOAA, methoxy-propanol is a flammable, colorless liquid used as a solvent and as an antifreeze agent. It is known to irritate skin, eyes and mucous membranes on contact and prolonged exposure to vapors may cause coughing, shortness of breath, dizziness and intoxication.

'There was a puddle of liquid discovered at the rear of the overturned semi near where where the trailer sustained significant damage from the rollover," fire officials stated.

An investigation by the Michigan Spill Response determined the puddle was water and that none of the 55-gallon drums were compromised.

Fire officials stated that "there is no danger to the public and the overall quantity of the hazardous material is low."

In addition to the hazardous goods, the semi was also hauling USPS packages and other miscellaneous products.

Fire and rescue crews dispersed from the scene, which has now be turned over to law enforcement and MDOT. Further mitigation and recovery efforts are being handled by Byers Wrecker Service.

No injures were reported in the incident and the exact cause for the semi overturning is still being investigated -- authorities said all lanes west and east on I-69 will remained closed until the contents of the trailer have been offloaded and the truck uprighted.

Multiple agencies from across the state have responded to the incident, including Lapeer Fire and Rescue Department, the Lapeer County Sheriff’s Office, the Lapeer County Office of Emergency Management, Michigan State Police, MDOT, the Lapeer County Road Commission and the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy.

Featured Image Photo Credit: Michigan State Police - Bay Region