Burning lorry drives 6 kilometres through German motorway tunnel

Halle, Germany, Feb 9, (dpa/GNA) – A lorry driver, managed to drive 6 kilometres through Germany’s longest motorway tunnel, with fire spreading across his trailer on Thursday night, according to police.

The driver tried briefly to extinguish the blaze but, when it wouldn’t go out, he had the presence of mind to drive out of the tunnel to prevent a more serious fire inside the tunnel, police said.

According to the police, the fire spread from one tire to the entire trailer and several cars loaded on the trailer late on Thursday. No one was injured.

Damage from the fire was estimated at around €250,000 ($269,000).

The fire happened in the 7.9-kilometre Rennsteig Tunnel in central Germany, near the town of Oberhof, which carries the A71 motorway under part of the Thuringian Forest mountains.

The motorway was closed at the tunnel overnight, before being partially reopened at 8 am (0700 GMT) on Friday morning.