Fiery truck crash blocks I-35 in Love County - KTEN.com - Texoma news, weather and sports

Fiery truck crash blocks I-35 in Love County

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An 18-wheeler crashed into an overpass on I-35 between Ardmore and Marietta late Wednesday afternoon. (Courtesy Amanda Turner) An 18-wheeler crashed into an overpass on I-35 between Ardmore and Marietta late Wednesday afternoon. (Courtesy Amanda Turner)
Debris lines I-35 after an 18-wheeler crashed into an overpass between Ardmore and Marietta. (Courtesy Amanda Turner) Debris lines I-35 after an 18-wheeler crashed into an overpass between Ardmore and Marietta. (Courtesy Amanda Turner)
Traffic on I-35 was backed up for miles after a fiery 18-wheeler crash in Love County late Wednesday afternoon. (KTEN) Traffic on I-35 was backed up for miles after a fiery 18-wheeler crash in Love County late Wednesday afternoon. (KTEN)

LOVE COUNTY, Okla. -- Traffic was backed up for miles between Ardmore and Marietta Wednesday evening after an 18-wheeler crashed into an overpass and burst into flames on Interstate 35.

The driver of the big rig was killed.

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol said the accident happened in the southbound lanes at mile marker 21, where Jacobs Road crosses the freeway. According to an initial report, the truck was "totally engulfed in flames."

Photos of the aftermath showed the trailer on its side next to the bridge; the cab of the truck was reduced to ashes.

The OHP said the driver -- identified as 45-year-old Johnathan Compton of Pawnee City, Nebraska -- was pinned in the wreckage for two hours before rescue teams could extract his remains. 

The OHP said all lanes of north and southbound I-35 between Oswalt Road (mile marker 21) and the Marietta exit (mile marker 15) were closed after the wreck. Northbound lanes reopened as of 7:20 p.m. but traffic south of Ardmore remained shut down until 11 p.m. when one of the two southbound lanes was reopened.

Jacobs Road was also closed so structural engineers could evaluate the integrity of the overpass.

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