One man is dead after two trucks collided and one of them exploded southwest of Benalto on Wednesday afternoon.
Sylvan Lake RCMP said the driver of a tanker truck, who was in his early 50s, died. The truck was empty, but exploded and burned due to petroleum product residue in the tank.
An autopsy is scheduled for Friday. The deceased man’s name will not be released until a positive identification is complete. Next of kin were notified based on strong tentative identification.
The other truck, towing a compressor unit, was heavily damaged but did not burn. Two males inside that truck were not injured.
At about 4 p.m., RCMP believe the southbound tanker truck on Range Road 30 drove onto the west shoulder edge, corrected, and drove across the road, entering the east ditch. The northbound truck entered the east ditch in an effort to avoid the tanker truck and stopped before being hit by the tanker truck.
An inspection of the tanker truck will be performed to determine if mechanical failure played a role in the collision.
No charges have been laid and none are expected.
Range Road 30 will be closed to repair significant damage to the road’s surface caused by the collision and fire. RCMP advise the public to avoid the area to minimize traffic.