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Separate semi fires cause traffic on I-95 in Indian River Co. in less than a day

Published: Mar. 3, 2016 at 4:13 PM EST
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INDIAN RIVER COUNTY, Fla. - A semi fire Wednesday night on Interstate 95 southbound at exit 155 in Indian River County caused traffic troubles in the area for the second time in less than 24 hours.

The truck was filled with paper products, and officials say it was fully engulfed.

The truck driver, Alejandro Benitez Ferrer, 53, of Hialeah Gardens, Fla., has 15 years of experience.  He said he had been driving since early Wednesday morning and was heading from North Carolina to Miami in hopes of reaching Fort Pierce to take a break.

However, he noticed his truck had caught fire and attempted to stop but crashed into a cement barrier.

"I saw a fire from the bottom, from the motor inside my truck, so that's why I lost my power, hit the wall and that's when a big fire started," said Benitez.

He says he attempted to put out the fire with a fire extinguisher but was unable because of the fire's intensity.

Although this fire wasn't specifically caused by area construction, lately fire officials say they've seen a lot of crashes in the area.

A battalion chief said in a separate accident overnight someone had to be taken to the hospital for their injuries.

Traffic was flowing by 2 a.m. Thursday after earlier closures.

No injuries were reported.

2 Semi Fires In Indian River County Wednesday

The first tractor-trailer fire of the day occurred just before 5:30 a.m. Wednesday near mile marker 150.  The semi caught fire between the Sebastian and Vero Beach exits early Wednesday, causing closures and detours for hours. All lanes were not reopened until the afternoon after that wreck.

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