Truck Driver Killed in Jonesboro Accident, Overpass Damaged

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Jonesboro I-555 overpass_1498575062363.jpg

Update:

JONESBORO, Ark. – Police have released the name of the sole victim who died in a fiery one-vehicle accident that damaged an I-555 overpass Tuesday morning.

The Jonesboro Police Department (JPD) identifies the semi truck driver as Jackie Becker, 57, of Jonesboro.

The JPD says Becker was the driver of a tractor-trailer rig that was traveling northbound on I-555 when it struck a bridge support for the Harrisburg Rd. overpass and burst into flames.

Troopers from Arkansas State Police Troop C headquartered in Jonesboro are investigating the accident. The Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department is inspecting the bridge and will develop a plan for the necessary road repairs.

The southbound two lanes of I-555 have been reopened but the northbound lanes will be detoured around the overpass for the time being. Motorists are advised to use extreme caution and expect delays when traveling in this area.

Original story:

JONESBORO, Ark. – A driver has died following a crash and explosion at the Harrisburg Road overpass on I-555 Tuesday, according to Jonesboro Police Department (JPD) Chief Rick Elliott.

JPD Public Information Specialist Paul Holmes told KAIT Region 8 News the driver took a direct hit to the concrete bridge support.

KAIT also reported the overpass was compromised following the accident and is in danger of collapsing.

Bridge inspectors were on the way at last report to look at the overpass, according to the Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department.

The accident happened shortly before 9 a.m. Tuesday, shutting down traffic through the area. By 10:30 a.m. the southbound lanes of I-555 were reopened but the northbound lanes remained closed.

Jonesboro Police said there had been at least three explosions.

Photos were posted on KAIT’s social media pages that showed a huge smoke plume rising from the accident scene right after it happened.

Drivers were being told to avoid the area. The iDriveArkansas website advised that the Hwy. 1B bridge over I-555 was closed just after 9:20 a.m. due to the accident damage. The website recommended detours to Browns Lane and East Parker Road.

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