Eastex Freeway reopens several hours after truck driver killed in fiery crash

HOUSTON – A truck driver was killed after his 18-wheeler slammed into a barricade in the Humble area.

Police said the accident happened around 12:45 a.m. Friday on the southbound lanes of Highway 59 near Townsend Boulevard and Loop 494.

An 18-wheeler carrying lawnmowers hit a barricade between the exit and the main lanes, flipped over and burst into flames, officers said.

Authorities said it took firefighters more than an hour to get the fire completely out. The driver, who was still inside the truck, was burned in the blaze, officers said.

While firefighters were working to put out the fire, there was a secondary accident involving five vehicles due to rubbernecking, police said.

Officers said some people had to be transported to the hospital, but it is unclear how many or what their injuries were.

All southbound main lanes of the Eastex Freeway were shut down for several hours as crews and investigators worked to clear the scene. 

PHOTOS: Aftermath of deadly crash on Eastex Freeway

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Crews were putting the finishing touches on the cleanup operation around 11:15 a.m. Friday. Once the cleanup was finished, the Texas Department of Transportation showed up to inspect the road and complete any necessary repairs before reopening the road.

TxDOT used a continuation machine that will fill in patches of concrete that crumbled from the extreme heat of the fire.

All traffic was being diverted to the feeder, which could cause a traffic nightmare for commuters out of Kingwood and other areas north of the accident.

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