UNICOI COUNTY, Tenn. (WJHL)- UPDATE – The Tennessee Highway Patrol has released new information following a crash in Unicoi County that involved a tractor-trailer carrying beer.
According to a THP crash report, the crash occurred on Wednesday, just before 4 p.m. near the 43 mile marker of I-26 West.
THP says a Chevrolet Silverado was passing the International tractor-trailer when one of the semi-truck’s tires blew out.
The report says the tire blew out on one of the left axles due to pressure, since there was a fire in the undercarriage of the tractor-trailer.
The Silverado left the ground after the tire blew out, which caused the side airbags on both sides of the truck to deploy.
The Silverado came to rest at the Exit 43 off ramp, and the semi stopped in the emergency lane and continued to burn.
THP reports the airbags caused minor injuries to the driver of the Silverado, James Christopher Brown, 43, of Mars Hill, North Carolina.
A passenger of the Silverado, Angela Honeycutt Brown, 41, also of Mars Hill, also suffered minor injuries.
They were both transported to the Unicoi County Hospital, according to THP.
The driver and passenger of the semi-truck were not injured.
No one involved in the crash has been charged, according to the report.
Officials with the Tennessee Department of Transportation alerted drivers Wednesday that part of the interstate in Unicoi County was closed due to a tractor-trailer crash.
News Channel 11’s Jessica Fuller reported live from the scene on our WJHL Facebook page below.
In a tweet, TDOT spokesperson Mark Nagi said, “I-26 West at MM 44 in Unicoi County is closed due to a tractor-trailer crash/fire. The tractor-trailer was reportedly transporting beer.”
The TDOT Smartway Map indicated that the crash was expected to be cleared by 7:10 p.m. EST.
News Channel 11 will continue to bring you updates as they become available on-air and on WJHL.com.