Driver Escapes Burning Truck In Bells - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Driver Escapes Burning Truck In Bells

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BELLS, TX -- A man who was driving his semi through Texoma is thanking his lucky stars, after his truck caught fire and he escaped without injury.

The driver was heading down the road when he noticed his truck was on fire. Other drivers stopped to help and try to put out the fire with fire extinguishers, but that did not seem to help. Meantime, the fire was burning the undercarriage of the truck.

A truck driver heading through Bells had stopped at a stop sign, when he happened to notice some smoke drifting by. That is when he suddenly realized it was coming from his truck.

"I just saw the smoke going there and pulled to the side and seen it burning there," says driver Ray Weddington.

Around 10 a.m., the back of the cab was on fire near the intersection of Highways 56 and 69, sending one store owner rushing into the back.

"We thought it was going to explode, so we ran as far away as possible because we were kind of scared," says Lawanda Smith.

"I just saw fire going on and called 911," says witness David Pineda, who snapped pictures of the burning truck. A tire had blown out, and the area around it was burning. The driver rushed to uncouple the cab from the back of the truck, which was empty.

"When I saw the smoke that's when I rushed back there and said I better get it unhooked from the trailer and I pulled away from the trailer," says Weddington.

"They started pulling back that one part of the truck and so I thought that maybe it was filled with liquid," says Smith.

The flames were simply too hot and fire extinguishers wouldn't work, but after a few minutes Bells firefighters showed up and were able to get the fire out quickly.

"I ended up using two fire extinguishers myself and then another citizen used two also and we still were not able to get it out," says Bells Police Chief Scott Barrett.

"Everybody was putting fire extinguishers on it, but that just wouldn't happen, it's got to be water when it's that hot," says Weddington.

With the fire out, the driver was left to consider a normal day on the road that quickly turned dangerous, and to wait for help from another driver.

"They said there was a fire to go take care of him so I got up here, I'm glad the fire trucks came because I don't like fire," says driver Mark Lee.

The El Dorado Chemical truck normally carries fertilizer for farms and was heading from Cooper to Whitewright. The road was briefly closed and no one was injured.