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Truck driver injured while trying to put out fire

August 16, 2010

A truck driver trying to put out a fire in a tire assembly on a tractor-trailer was injured Monday afternoon along Interstate 81 when a tire on the burning truck exploded, according to a Maryland State Police spokesman.

The incident began when a southbound tractor-trailer driver was told by another truck driver over a citizens band radio that smoke was coming from the tractor-trailer, Trooper 1st Class W. Talbert said.

The tractor-trailer driver pulled over just south of the Pennsylvania state line, according to Talbert, who was called to the scene at about 3 p.m.

Another truck driver stopped and approached the tractor-trailer with a fire extinguisher to help put out the fire, Talbert said.

A tire exploded as a result of the fire, and the trucker who was trying to put out the fire was struck in the face by material from the blast, Talbert said.

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The truck driver suffered "powder burns" and was taken to Washington County Hospital, but was expected to be OK, Talbert said.

The southbound lanes of I-81 were closed for a short time while the fire was put out, Talbert said.

--Dave McMillion

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