New details in fiery I-79 crash that killed Bridgeport man

Authorities have identified a man killed in a fiery crash on Interstate 79.
Published: Aug. 17, 2022 at 8:46 AM EDT
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WHITE HALL, W.Va (WDTV) - Officials have released new details in a Tuesday afternoon crash on I-79 that killed a Bridgeport man.

Multiple fire crews responded to the crash just before 4:30 p.m. that had heavy black smoke visible from miles away, according to the Valley Volunteer Fire Department.

The fire was under control within an hour, and an extensive cleanup was requested due to diesel fuel and oil on the roadway.

Officials said fire crews conducted a hazmat containment on the Tygart Valley River to collect fluids from the accident that made it into the river.

Crews used over 100 bags of oil dry to collect the fluid on the bridge and the roadway before the bridge.

Valley VFD says the left lane has since reopened for traffic, but the right lane remains closed pending inspection due to extensive heat damage on the bridge.

WVSP continues to investigate the crash.

Authorities have identified a man killed in a fiery crash on Interstate 79.

The crash happened Tuesday afternoon near the White Hall exit in Marion County.

State police say the truck struck a guardrail before traveling across both southbound lanes before ultimately catching fire on the Tygart River Bridge.

The driver was identified as 71-year-old Larry Lee Atha of Bridgeport.

Authorities say Atha was unable to escape the vehicle and was pronounced dead on the scene.

The crash remains under investigation.

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