Highway 89, Utah

Highway 89, Utah.

The driver of a semi truck loaded with 11,000 pounds of ice cream, and on its way from Washington state to Aurora, Colorado, felt like he was choking and began coughing violently, ultimately winding up in a fiery crash, according to a video on HuffPostLive. The auto accident happened on June 26 at about 2:15 p.m. as he drove north on Highway 89 near Sunset Drive in Layton, Utah, Mark Green and Gene Kennedy report for Fox13now.com.

The driver, Mo Ewaishy, 59, from Washington state, was not seriously injured, writes Loretta Park for the Standard-Examiner. He said he began coughing violently when saliva went down his windpipe. He wanted to pull over, but the road’s shoulder was too narrow, Fox13now.com writes.

Ewaishy reportedly moved to the center median in an attempt to stop, but he could not slow down fast enough, HuffPost writes. He tried to pull into the median area near Valley View Drive, but there was a line of cars waiting to make a left turn, writes Park. As Ewaishy coughed, he crossed to the shoulder of the southbound lanes, narrowly missing two cars, and hit the brakes, Fox13now.com writes.

At that point, the truck jack knifed and a guard rail tore the truck’s fuel tank, which exploded, and the cabin went up in flames. The fire melted everything, including the trailer and all the ice cream, HuffPost writes. Firefighters put out the blaze and a hazardous materials team cleaned up the diesel fuel.

Fox13now.com quotes Ewaishy:

‘When it jackknifed, it leaned over the tree and saved my life, prevented the truck from flipping over,’ he said. ‘The fuel tank combusted immediately, and I saw the flames coming out, so I exited through the passenger door and the rest is history.’ […]

‘Obviously I’m grateful I survived, by the grace of God I survived, and I’m completely thankful,’ he said.

All southbound lanes were closed from Highway 193 to 1500 North for nearly an hour, Park writes. One lane was open at 2:55 p.m. but traffic was still backed up. Layton Police Lt. Shawn Horton told Park that officials are investigating why the accident happened and citations are pending.

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