Semi-truck crashes near Portland train yard, ignites massive fire

PORTLAND, Ore. — The driver of a semitrailer truck is dead after his vehicle crashed near a Portland railroad yard, causing a fire that sent plumes of black smoke over the city.

Firefighters were called about 8:45 a.m. Sunday to the industrial area along U.S. 30 just south of St Johns Bridge on the Willamette River.

Portland Fire spokesman Terry Foster said the truck was carrying some sort of fuel product that caught fire.

Eight train cars carrying asphalt were damaged, one severely. The contents did not ignite.

Authorities said nearby businesses were evacuated. The nearest homes are about a half-mile from the fire.

Portland police shut down the highway and a half-marathon race in the area is canceled.

Authorities say the scene will take about two hours to cool.