Collision of 2 fuel tankers closes Dempster Highway near Eagle Plains

One person is injured and the Dempster Highway from Eagle Plains to Fort McPherson is closed after two semi-trucks travelling in the same direction crashed on Tuesday evening.

Both of the super tanker fuel trucks were travelling north to Inuvik when they "made contact" one kilometre inside the N.W.T. border at about 7 p.m., said Merle Carpenter, regional superintendent for the government of the Northwest Territories' infrastructure department.

"There is one injury with one of the drivers," he said. "Both have been transported and treated at the Fort McPherson nursing station and released last night. There is no fuel leaks from the four tankers that are traveling together."

Carpenter said the cause of the crash is being investigated by the RCMP. He said there was some indication that wind could have been a factor, but it was only recorded at 35 kilometres per hour at the time, "which is not enough to blow a significant weight off the highway." 

Carpenter said there is a bit of fuel leaking from the truck itself, which he said has been contained by a contractor. 

He said the trucking company's owner is sending empty trucks to drain the fuel from the tankers. Local contractors will right the vehicles once the tanks are emptied.

The highway may remained closed for a few days.