KINGMAN - Memorial Day travelers into and out of Bullhead City found their route blocked Monday afternoon by a nine-vehicle accident, which injured eight people, on Highway 68 near McCormick Boulevard.
At 2:16 p.m., a semi-truck carrying 41,000 pounds of corrosive potassium siliconate lost its brakes driving down the hill into the city. The driver attempted to turn into the runaway truck lane at the side of the highway, but was blocked by holiday traffic.
The truck then crossed the median and struck an SUV in the opposite lane, starting a chain reaction that damaged or destroyed the other vehicles, two of which caught on fire.
The semi-truck came to rest on the back end of an El Camino that had been pulling a trailer. The El Camino became stuck under the front wheels of the semi and struck a sedan, which became entangled on the El Camino's trailer. The El Camino's trailer then struck a pick-up, which dislodged the trailer and the sedan.
The Bullhead City Fire Department responded with three engines, 25 firefighters and six ambulances. Clark County Fire Department, responded from Laughlin with an engine and an ambulance. American Medical Rescue also responded with an ambulance.
The fire departments put out two car fires. Eight people listed in serious condition were transported to Western Arizona Medical Center for treatment.
Bullhead Police Department closed down northbound lanes and limited access to southbound lanes on Highway 68 until about 5 p.m. A HAZMAT crew was called to check the load of potassium siliconate; the load was not disturbed. The material is used as a water repellent for cement.