Truck carrying radioactive material temporarily closes Oak Ridge Turnpike

OAK RIDGE (WATE) – Oak Ridge Turnpike has reopened after a possible HazMat situation.

At around 11:50 a.m. Friday, Oak Ridge Turnpike was closed between Montana Avenue and Newport Drive after an incident involving a truck carrying radioactive material. Oak Ridge Fire Department said the driver of the truck felt ill, so he stopped his truck just off the turnpike and called 911.

When first responders arrived, Oak Ridge Fire Chief Darryl Kerley said they noticed the radioactive signage on the truck and called for a HazMat crew. Low levels of radiation were detected. The driver was taken to the hospital and the turnpike was closed to traffic.

The truck was moved to a parking lot at Katie Hunter Field, which is nearby. Later, Oak Ridge Police police and fire departments escorted the truck to a business in the Oak Ridge-area that specializes in disposing radioactive material.

“This was a routine shipment and posed no threat to the public,” said Sarah Self with the city of Oak Ridge. “The evaluation of the shipment was also standard operating procedure to ensure the shipment was not related to the medical problem. The shipment was escorted to the final destination in Oak Ridge by the Police and Fire Department due to the nature of the incident.”

Self said if there had been any threat to the public, an emergency notification would have been sent out to the public.

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