FAIRFIELD, Conn. – A truck carrying paper goods caught fire on I-95 in Fairfield early Thursday and a Fairfield firefighter who responded was hospitalized with a non-life-threatening injury.
The incident occurred near Exit 23 on the northbound side of the highway at about 3 a.m. The driver told emergency responders he saw sparks coming from the rear of his tractor-trailer truck. When he stopped, he saw that a rear tire had caught fire.
He attempted to put out the flames himself with a fire extinguisher, but was unable to stop the fire before it spread to the cargo compartment. The flames spread quickly through the rolled paper products, and when Fairfield Fire Department crews arrived the truck was fully ablaze.
“This was a deep-seated fire that could not be easily extinguished and required inter-agency cooperation between the State Police, Department of Transportation and a private towing contractor to quickly control and mitigate,” said Asst. Fire Chief Scott Bisson, the incident commander.
A Fairfield firefighter was taken to a nearby hospital for evaluation for a heat-related injury. No other injuries were reported.
“We were very fortunate that hazardous chemicals were not involved and there were no other injuries,” Bisson said.
Both the truck and its contents were unsalvageable. The fire was ruled an accident due to equipment malfunction.
I-95’s northbound side was reduced to one lane while emergency crews put out the fire. Exit 23 reopened at about 9 a.m.