Portion of Beltway Closes After Crash

Tanker catches fire

A portion of the Beltway was closed Wednesday in both directions during morning rush hour at Van Dorn Street due to a tanker crash and fuel spill.

The incident happened at about 7 a.m.  Police said the driver of a tractor-trailer was traveling westbound on I-495 and veered into the right emergency shoulder and struck a tow truck and a disabled vehicle. The tractor-trailer, loaded with dry cement, then overturned into the two left lanes and its fuel tanks ruptured and caught fire.

The driver of the tractor-trailer, George Dawson III, 29, of Baltimore, was transported to Inova Fairfax Hospital and did not appear to have suffered any life-threatening injuries, police said. Dawson was charged with reckless driving.

Significant delays hampered the morning commute.  As Joan Morris, a spokeswoman for the Virginia Department of Transportation, explained it to the Associated Press, traffic would be "miserable" for the rest of the morning rush hour.

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