Oil tanker fire which closed the M1 motorway overnight near Chesterfield due to 'engine damage'

  • Video from Meghan Luton

An investigation into the cause of an oil tanker fire on the M1 on Tuesday has concluded the most likely cause was due to engine damage.

Firefighters from three different counties were called to the incident on the southbound carriageway between junction 28 and 29 near Chesterfield and Mansfield around 10.30am, causing severe delays due to emergency resurfacing work.

The motorway was closed in both directions well into the afternoon for the safety of motorists, with the southbound carriageway not reopening fully until the following morning.

Six fire engines, two water carriers, three foam units and one environmental protection unit were sent from Nottinghamshire, South Yorkshire and Derbyshire and East Midlands Airport fire and rescue services, with Derbyshire Police, National Highways and the Environment Agency also supporting.

There was a large response to the tanker fire after used transformer oil spilled onto the road. Credit: Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service

The driver of the tanker was out of the vehicle before help arrived.

Residents in Tibshelf, Mansfield and the surrounding areas were asked to keep their windows and doors shut during the incident due to the smoke plume that was created. Motorists on the M1 and in the local area were also asked of keep their car windows closed.

At the time of the fire, the tanker had been carrying used transformer oil for recycling. The cab of the vehicle suffered significant fire damage while the tanker itself maintained its structural integrity, though due to heat damage to some of the valves on the tanker, a significant amount of the contents escaped and set alight. 

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