A big-rig driver averted a major disaster late Friday night when his truck caught fire on Highway 101 near Goleta, according to the Santa Barbara County Fire Department.
The trucker was hauling some 8,700 gallons of gasoline from Southern California to Lompoc shortly after 11:30 p.m., when he noticed a fire in the tractor portion of his rig, said Fire Department spokesman Vince Agapito.
The driver pulled to the side of northbound Highway 101 near the Turnpike Road exit, and separated the tanker portion of the rig, Agapito said.
“The action of the driver prevented the tanker portion from igniting,” Agapito noted.
Firefighters were able to quickly extinguish the blaze, which began in the rear wheels of the big-rig’s tractor unit, Agapito said.
The northbound freeway lanes were closed down for about 20 minutes while firefighters controlled the fire.
No injuries were reported.
Cause of the blaze was not reported.