Tanker fire causes I-95 overpass to collapse in Philadelphia


Philadelphia’s I-95 overpass COLLAPSES after massive fire from tanker that burst into flames underneath: Highway is shut as authorities battle to prevent further destruction

  • Around 6 am Sunday, a massive fire broke out near I-95 in the Tacony section of Philadelphia
  • Part of an overpass has collapsed and closed the highway
  • There is no word on reported injuries, and fire crews are on scene trying to put out the blaze 

An Interstate-95 overpass in Philadelphia has collapsed after a massive tanker fire underneath. 

Video showed the flames shooting up from the road with the collapsed overpass falling to the pavement below. Smoke has filled the area and could be seen from miles away. 

The fire started around 6am Sunday between the exit for Academy Road and Cottoman Avenue. That is in the Tacony section of north Philadelphia. 

There is no word on reported injuries. 

Officials warn the road could be closed for weeks for repair. 

Coast Guard officials say 8,500 gallons of gasoline leaked in the incident and some has spilled into the Delaware River. Coast Guard crews are working to clean up the water.  

A massive fire burns near I-95 in Philadelphia. There is no word on reported injuries

A massive fire burns near I-95 in Philadelphia. There is no word on reported injuries

Authorities have not said what caused the fire and warned there could be more damage to the overpass because of the incident

Authorities have not said what caused the fire and warned there could be more damage to the overpass because of the incident

The blaze caused the northbound side of the bridge to collapse and the southbound is ‘compromised,’ according to NBC Philadelphia. 

Officials told a local reporter ‘the roadway is gone.’

Authorities have not said what caused the fire. 

Philadelphia fire Captain Derrick Bowmer said runoff from the truck is also causing explosions underground.

‘We will be here for awhile,’ he said. ‘We have fire coming out of those manholes.’

Officials have warned that the road will be closed for a long stretch as they work to put out the fire and repair the overpass. 

‘Today’s going to be a long day. Obviously, with 95 northbound gone and southbound questionable, it’s going to be even longer,’ said Dominick Mireles, the director of the Philadelphia Office of Emergency Management,  according to ABC6

Runoff from the truck is also causing manholes to explode near the scene, officials said

Runoff from the truck is also causing manholes to explode near the scene, officials said

Officials told a local reporter 'the roadway is gone' after the collapse of the overpass on I-95

Officials told a local reporter ‘the roadway is gone’ after the collapse of the overpass on I-95

An engineering professor from Drexel University, Amir Farnam, told the Philadelphia Inquirer that it appeared the support structures for the bridge were made of steel, which made them susceptible to the heat from the fire. 

‘There is no concrete surrounding them,’ he said. ‘That means they are very susceptible to any sort of high temperature.’ 

Steel melts at about 2,500 degrees and loses half its strength at 1,000 degrees, he added. 

‘When you have a fire like this and it lasts for a few hours, the yield strength of the steel decreases drastically, and it fails,’ Farnam said.



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