ISLAMABAD: Traffic on a portion of Islamabad Expressway remained blocked for over six hours after a loaded oil tanker overturned and the spilled oil caught fire on Tuesday.

The oil tanker was heading towards Sihala on the Expressway and when it reached near Kak Pull (bridge) it overturned, officials of the police and capital administration said, adding that as a result oil spilled out of the tanker on the road and caught fire.

Shortly after getting information about the incident, the teams of police and administration along with rescue workers, including firefighters and paramedics, reached the site.

The officials said that a portion of the Expressway was also closed to traffic to avoid any untoward incident. They said that the tanker’s driver and helper were injured with multiple fractures in the accident and they had been shifted to a local hospital.

The police cordoned off the area to stop people from gathering there, the sources said, adding that the firefighters extinguished the fire and later started work to remove the oil from the road and tanker.

In the evening, a crane was brought to the spot, which removed the tanker from the road, they said.

During the rescue work, traffic remained suspended on affected portion of the Expressway, they said, adding that as a result hundreds of vehicles got stuck in over kilometre-long queues for hours.

At one stage, long queues of vehicles reached Faizabad Interchange.

An officer of the capital administration told Dawn that the incident took place due to failure of breaks.

He said that the company of the oil tanker was approached and asked to produce the vehicle fitness certificate. He said that besides the fitness certificate they would also check if the tanker was overloaded to ascertain cause of the accident.

Published in Dawn, July 24th, 2019

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