Blame it on the heat or just plain bad luck, but there's no denying that it has been a terrible week for morning commuters around Corona.
Just two days after a slippery trail of sewage closed the northbound Corona Expressway for 4 1/2 hours, a tractor-trailer rig caught fire and spilled a chemical defoliant early Thursday morning on the Riverside Freeway.
The defoliant, being hauled in one- and 30-gallon containers, spilled onto the freeway about 3:10 a.m., forcing firefighters to build a dike to contain the liquid near the Main Street off-ramp while the Riverside County Hazardous Materials Unit was summoned, said Corona Fire Chief Robert McNabb.
"The tractor's right rear dual (tires) erupted into flames as a result of a bad bearing or brake shoe," Highway Patrol Officer Mike Devine said. The driver pulled his truck and two trailers to the nearby exit ramp and tried unsuccessfully to extinguish the flames, which spread to the front trailer.