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By Eric Heinz

A semi-truck that turned over during the night of Sunday, Sept. 17, on I-5 in San Clemente continued to slow traffic in the area this morning.

According to California Highway Patrol (CHP) of San Juan Capistrano, the driver Freightliner was towing a 48-foot utility trailer at about 10:30 p.m. when he heard a “loud noise” and the truck began to veer to the right. The truck drove over the shoulder and a cement guardrail and turned over on the side a bridge just south of the northbound Avenida Pico off-ramp.

“During the collision, one of the fuel saddle tanks was punctured and it began leaking diesel fuel onto the paves right shoulder,” a press release from CHP stated. “The fuel continued to drain down the right shoulder and into a storm drain approximately 200 yards north of the overturned vehicle.”

About 20 gallons of diesel fuel spilled from the vehicle.

Hazmat units from Caltrans as well as deputies from Orange County Sheriff’s Department were able to plug the leak, the release stated. Ocean Blue was also dispatched to the scene. The two rightmost lanes of northbound I-5 at the scene were closed at 11 p.m. on Sunday.

SigAlert information showed traffic was backed up as far as four miles south of San Clemente, while the two lanes remained closed for officials to mop up the fuel and assess the incident. The SigAlert was in still effect at 8:55 a.m. on Monday morning.

No arrests were made in the situation. CHP officials have not yet released the information of the owner of the semi.

This is a developing story. More information will be provided when it becomes available.

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