In one of the many city center tunnels, a serious crash led to a car fire where 50 cars required evacuation. The A38 tunnel was affected by this wreck in the mid-morning on May 20th. Fire crews and EMS arrived on the scene immediately. The first responders led a little over 20 people safely out of the tunnel and into the open air for safety. The tunnel was immediately closed in both directions.
The Queensway Tunnel fire happened along the northbound route up near Holloway Circus. At the time, there were 50 vehicles in the tunnel. Fire services acknowledged that only one vehicle was involved in the fire. The driver of the vehicle, which caught fire, did get out to safety in time.
Civilians were evacuated into open-air not only to get them away from the smoke but so the fire crews could get to work on containing the blaze. There were no injuries to the driver of the impacted vehicle. There were two ambulances and a team of paramedics on the scene to help deal with any injuries.
One paramedic on the scene was taken to a local hospital to receive treatment for smoke inhalation. Initially, they were taken in as a precautionary measure and then was later released. The tunnel reopened some hours later without any injuries or deaths. The tunnel was vented and cleared out, so there is no residual smoke that could pose a problem to drivers. It is alarming how a car fire within a tunnel could do so much damage, and it's a relief that the first responder crews were on the scene so quickly and able to ensure the safety of everyone present.
There's currently no work on why the single-vehicle caught fire, and what other elements may be present.
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