CENTRAL BRIDGE - A Tractor-trailer carrying compressed natural gas overturned Sunday morning on Interstate 88, shutting the highway and resulting in the precautionary evacuation of five homes, state police said.
The interstate remained closed just after 2 p.m. between Exits 22 and 23, essentially between the north Cobleskill exit and the Schoharie exit. Troopers indicated in a release that it wasn't known when the interstate would reopen.
"It's going to be a lengthy process," Central Bridge Fire Department First Assistant Chief Scott Johnson told reporters Sunday afternoon. "Everything's secure at this time. We're just trying to do it in a manner as to not cause any other harm to any responders or the personnel working to remove the debris."
He later noted all leaks had been controlled.
The driver involved in the crash got out of the semi on his own and was unharmed, state police said.
State police evacuated the five homes in the area. They also asked the media not to fly drones in the area for safety reasons. The Federal Aviation Administration has also instituted a formal temporary flight restriction for 2,000 feet above the crash scene, state police said.
The crash happened at around 5:30 a.m. on the interstate's Central Bridge portion. Troopers arrived to find the tractor-trailer in the median and placards on it warning of hazardous materials, specifically natural gas, state police said.
Images: Semi carrying natural gas rolls over in Schoharie County, March 3, 2019
The investigation into what caused the crash remained ongoing, state police said. The state police commercial vehicle enforcement unit responded to the scene.
Interstate traffic is being rerouted along Route 7 until the interstate can be reopened.
Assisting at the scene: Central Bridge Fire and EMS, Schoharie Fire, Cobleskill Fire and AMR Ambulance.
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