Workers examine a propane truck that went off the highway of the southbound Maine Turnpike at mile marker 42 in Scarborough and rolled onto its side on Wednesday, snarling traffic and sending the driver to the hospital for evaluation. Gregory Rec/Staff Photographer

Southbound traffic on the Maine Turnpike was disrupted for hours after a tanker truck carrying propane went off the highway in Scarborough and rolled over Wednesday morning.

The tanker did not leak propane, but it took crews from the Scarborough Fire Department and the Maine Department of Environmental Protection several hours to pump propane out of the tanker and to safely purge propane from the lines on the truck. The process was completed around 6:30 p.m., avoiding the possibility of closing the turnpike to traffic for 30 minutes sometime late Wednesday evening.

Maine State Police restricted southbound traffic on the turnpike to two lanes for most of the day following the crash, which was reported at 8:42 a.m. The Exit 42 southbound on-ramp in Scarborough was closed for most of the day.

“The Exit 42 SB ramp was shut down to traffic and only two lanes were open past the evening commute, creating a significant backup of traffic,” Shannon Moss, spokesperson for the Maine Department of Public Safety, said around 6 p.m. Wednesday. Moss said the successful recovery operation “avoided a complete shutdown of traffic in the area. All lanes are expected to open soon.”

Moss identified Matthew Jackson, 37, of Raymond, New Hampshire, who works for LP Transportation of Chester, New York, as the driver of the propane truck. Jackson was taken to a hospital for evaluation after the crash.

The crash remains under investigation by Maine State Police.

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