Car Accidents

Chatham Man killed in Fuel Tanker Explosion

A Chatham man was killed and a fuel tanker truck driver was in critical condition after a fiery wreck on Route 78.

A man driving an Audi A4 from the Garden State Parkway ramp to Route 78 westbound when he traveled into the path of the tanker, which hit his car, according to a state police spokesman. Both vehicles then crashed with a tractor-trailer hauling mulch in the left express lane.

The tanker and big-rig continued off the left express lane before the fuel truck became mounted on the concrete barrier, spokesman Sgt. Gregory Williams said, citing a preliminary investigation. The 9,000 gallons of fuel in the tanker ignited and flames engulfed both trucks.

The driver was pronounced dead at the scene, the spokesman said. The tanker truck driver – Balwinder Singh, 35, of Valley Stream, New York, was listed in critical condition after he managed to climb through the windshield of the burning truck. The raging fuel-fed blaze sent thick dark smoke and flames above the scene and left motorists stuck in major traffic for at least four hours.

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