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Police release name of woman killed in diesel tanker crash

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The truck carrying diesel fuel collided with a vehicle. 10,000 gallons of fuel spilled and the driver of the car was killed. | Photos: Stephan Rockefeller, EastIdahoNews.com helicopter

UPDATE 7:25 p.m.

The following is an update from Idaho State Police:

On Tuesday, Nov. 1, at 8:30 a.m., the Idaho State Police investigated a two-vehicle, fatality crash on State Highway 75 near milepost 227, near Clayton, in Custer County.

Susan Hobbs, age 63, of Clayton, was driving a 1999 Subaru Forester northbound on State Highway 75, going into a curved portion of the road. Jarin Smith, age 37, of Blackfoot, was driving southbound in a 2010 Kenworth pulling double tanker trailers hauling 10,000 gallons of diesel fuel.

Hobbs crossed the centerline and impacted with the Kenworth. The Kenworth rolled, rupturing the fuel tanks. Smith was wearing a seatbelt and able to get out of the Kenworth with no injuries. The trailers were fully engulfed on the eastbound side of the road.

Hobbs was not wearing a seatbelt; she was deceased in her vehicle. Family notifications have been made.

The southbound lane of travel was re-opened at approximately 5 p.m. North Custer Fire District was able to contain the diesel spill. Idaho Department of Transportation and tow personnel are still on scene, working to clear the scene.

This crash is under investigation by the Idaho State Police, with assistance from the Custer County Sheriff Office.

ORIGINAL STORY

CLAYTON — A tanker truck carrying diesel fuel collided with a car this morning on Highway 75, resulting in the death of the car’s driver.

The crash happened around 8:45 a.m. Tuesday between Sunbeam and Challis near the East Fort Salmon River Bridge Complex about 25 miles southwest of Challis, according to a news release.

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A massive plume of black smoke could be seen for miles after the truck crashed. | Courtesy photo

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The Idaho Transportation Department says the tanker overturned, spilling all of its 10,000 gallons of diesel fuel, which then caught fire. The fire burned nearly five hours, generating a cloud of black smoke and intense heat.

Volunteers from the North Custer County Fire District kept the fire in check until it consumed large pools of fuel. The fire is now smoldering.

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The burning fuel reached and torched a culvert under the highway, according to ITD, but crews diked the path of the fire, keeping it from spreading beyond the highway right of way. No fuel reached the river. A power line was also burned, according to an Idaho Transportation Department news release.

Fire District Chief Launna Gunderson said the crash and fire damaged the roadway.

Emergency crews remain at the crash, and environmental officials are en route to the site, as are a cleanup contractor and wrecker.

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