I-20 back open after fiery wreck sends three to hospital - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina |

I-20 back open after fiery wreck sends three to hospital

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Source: Ashley Williams Source: Ashley Williams
Trucks backed up on the I-20 westbound shoulder Trucks backed up on the I-20 westbound shoulder

By Jillian Capobianco - bio | email

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - Interstate 20 is back open hours after a fiery accident near mile marker 57 sent three people to the hospital on Thursday. 

The westbound lanes of the highway were closed for about five hours and eastbound traffic moved very slowly in the area as the South Carolina Highway Patrol investigated an accident involving a car and an 18-wheeler. 

The accident happened around 11:00am Thursday. Troopers said a car traveling eastbound crossed the median and hit a truck in the westbound lane. The truck jack-knifed, skidded across the guardrail and caught fire. "I guess it was from the impact and fuel being spilled," speculated Lance Corporal Josef Robinson.

The car's three occupants were taken to hospitals in Richland and Lexington counties in serious condition. The truck driver is fine.

Westbound traffic on I-20 was at a standstill for hours as the Highway Patrol's accident investigation team cleared and mapped the scene. Troopers turned cars around on the interstate and sent them back to U.S. 378, but trucks weren't so fortunate.

Trucks had to be moved off the highway onto the shoulder, and were too big to turn around. "I've been out here for about three and a half hours, sitting here," said truck driver Glen O'Neill.

Despite the long delays, some of the people affected are taking the whole thing in stride. "It's not a great strain on me because in the industry, the first thing we learn is to try and be patient," said trucker Anthony Burroughs.

"It happens, and we see it a lot," said trucker Mike Chaffins.

Still, five hours stuck in traffic means the drivers' loads will be late, and it means a hard day's work on Friday.

If you took a photo or video of the wreck, you can Send It To 10 by clicking here.

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