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Tractor trailer fire brings I-81NB to a halt near Marathon

Local News

UPDATED (11:28 am)

Authorities have now charged the driver of a tractor trailer that caught fire this morning on Interstate 81-NB in Marathon for driving on suspended registrations, along with other equipment violations and for not having a log book.

Officers with the Cortland County Sheriff’s Office responded just before 5 am to the scene near the 41 mile marker, where they say 50-year-old Hector Hernandez of Allentown PA , was hauling construction debris in a 2014 Volvo Tractor Trailer owned by Pino Recycling Inc. from Bronx, New York.

Hernandez was headed northbound when the debris ignited in his trailer and forced him to a stop, bringing all northbound lanes to a halt from Exit 8 (Whitney Point) to Exit 10 (McGraw) for just under an hour.

The truck and trailer were moved to a nearby median turnaround, which is when investigators discovered Hernandez to have commit the above violations.

Also responding to the call were crews from Marathon and Killawog Fire Departments, Broome County Sheriff’s Office, New York State
Department of Transportation, CNY Towing and The New York State Police Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Unit.

Hernandez was issued citations and is scheduled to appear in the Marathon Court at a later date.

Photo below from Cortland County Sheriff’s Office:


ORIGINAL (8: 21 am)

State Police are assisting the Cortland County Sheriff’s Department at the scene of a tractor trailer fire that closed lanes on Interstate 81 NB just before 5:30 am near mile marker 42 (between Cortland/McGraw and Marathon exits).

The initial incident closed both lanes of the highway for nearly an hour, with both reopening around 6:15 am.

As of 7 am, the truck was moved to the median and not blocking traffic, but smoke from the fire was still causing limited visibility in both directions of the roadway.

Assisting the Sheriff’s Office and Troopers at the scene were members from the Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Unit (CVEU) and area fire personnel.

Photos below from NYSP:

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