By Brittany Jeffers


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WAXAHACHIE (CBSDFW.COM) – Crews in Waxahachie are working hard to open part of a major highway that was shut down early Monday after a big rig fire. The incident happened at about 1:30 a.m. when the 18-wheeler carrying coffee creamer crashed into a concrete barrier.

The vehicle caught fire in the southbound lanes of Interstate-35E, right over Highway 287 in Waxahachie. The driver smelled smoke and was able to escape with no injuries before the truck went up in flames. No other cars were involved in this incident, but the crash did leave behind a big mess.

The roadway was charred after the truck fire, forcing the southbound lanes of the interstate to be closed through the night and into Monday afternoon. And, since this happened on a bridge, authorities are keeping the highway shut down until two things can happen.

An engineer from the Texas Department of Transportation must first inspect the bridge to make sure that it is still structurally sound after the fire. Then, police in Waxahachie have said that they will not reopen the bridge until a broken piece of guardrail can be replaced.

Crews are also trying to clean up a fuel spill on the roads, as police investigate what caused the crash.

Drivers traveling in both directions along Highway 287 have been forced to use the frontage roads to get past. Traffic through this area is expected to be backed up for some time on Monday. Anyone who needs to travel in this area is advised to seek out an alternate route. Check the traffic map for the latest updates.