Big-rig crash, fuel leak causes enormous traffic jam on Bay Bridge

Saturday, October 29, 2016

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Three lanes of the Bay Bridge were blocked on the eastbound Bay Bridge before Treasure Island Friday morning, after an accident involving a big-rig that resulted in a 50-gallon fuel spill.

CHP reports that the big-rig has been towed and crews are using an absorbing agent to clean up the fuel leak.

The driver says a car cut him off, he lost control, hit a wall and then jackknifed. The CHP is still working to confirm that, searching for witnesses to the crash. They are looking into whether high speed or rain played a role in the crash as well.

The driver is OK. He was in his seatbelt and was able to get out and walk out of the vehicle.

The accident created a traffic jam of epic proportions Friday morning as thousands of Bay Area residents were stuck in traffic for hours after a big rig crash blocked three lanes on the lower deck of Bay Bridge.

The incident affected commuters coming from San Mateo County, the South Bay, the East Bay and anyone who was near any of the approaches to the bridge.

In the Financial District, it was gridlock. Some drivers reported it taking over 30 minutes to move one block.

George Pfleger, who lives in the Glen Park neighborhood in San Francisco, which is typically a 30-minute drive to downtown, says it took him two-and-a-half-hours.

One Alameda resident had been in her car for three hours. "I'm trying to be very zen about it. I'm trying to stay relaxed. Breathe in, yes, breather in, breathe out exactly, that's what I'm doing," she said.

"The on ramp at First and Harrison was closed and the Bay Bridge was reduced to one lane at one point so that has really intensified traffic in on San Francisco streets," said Paul Rosa with the MTA.

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency typically has parking control officers at three to four on-ramps during commute hours. Friday morning, they had 25 officers directing traffic, but by then, the damage had been done, unless you launched a preemptive strike.

Meanwhile, the hashtag #baybridge was heavily used. Tweets came in from people sharing ridiculous drive-times on their traffic apps.

Mr. Hughes wrote of this two-and-a-half hour ride from Concord to San Francisco. Others tweeted from people stuck on the streets of San Francisco to poor driving habits of others.

ABC7 News producer Eric Shackelford live-tweeted his attempt to get from the ABC7 News station near the Exploratorium, to the Bay Bridge. It took him four hours and 16 minutes to get from San Francisco to Alameda.