For Immediate Release
Contact: Jon Paxton
Date: January 31st, 2023
Vehicle strikes Propane Truck closing Portion of Townsend Winona Road
Flagstaff, AZ -
UPDATE: 2:30 pm Townsend Winona Rd. has limited reopening at this time. The propane truck has been removed, however the eastbound lane remains closed pending the removal of the damaged passenger vehicle. The westbound lane is being regulated by deputies.
At 8:50 am Deputies responded to the junction of Townsend – Winona Rd and Leupp Rd. for a report of a 2-vehicle accident involving a 2500-gallon propane tanker and a Jeep Cherokee. Information from the 911 call indicated the propane tanker was leaking. Flagstaff Fire HazMat teams were requested along with Fire EMS.
Deputies learned the driver of the Jeep Cherokee dropped his phone and while reaching down to pick it up, drifted across the center line, striking the tanker in the rear axel and tearing the axel off from the truck. Both vehicles were left inoperable from the accident, blocking the Townsend – Winona Rd. in both directions.
The drivers had minor injuries and were treated on scene.
The direction the propane is leaking and potentially pooling is in close proximity to the BNSF railroad tracks. BNSF were notified and are assessing whether to stop all train traffic until the Flagstaff Fire HazMat team has deemed the area safe.
The Flagstaff Fire HazMat team and the Arizona Department of Public Safety is on scene and accessing the incident. The Arizona Department of Public Safety Commercial Officer is also on scene inspecting the tanker. No evacuations are expected at this time.
Townsend – Winona Rd. is closed in both directions at Leupp Rd. junction and Closed at Townsend – Winona and Velvet Valley Rd. Leupp Road is open but only accessible from Winona and I -40 exit.
There is no time frame for reopening the road at this time. Updates will be provided when the public safety issue has been resolved.