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‘It’s like the apocalypse,’ one dead after fiery accident on Highway 40

Click to play video: 'One dead in fiery Highway 40 accident' One dead in fiery Highway 40 accident
WATCH ABOVE: A tanker truck caught fire and exploded on the Metropolitan near Lejeunesse Street, killing at least one person and shutting down the highway in both directions. Global's Elysia Bryan-Baynes reports – Aug 9, 2016

A man in his 40s  is dead following a fiery accident on the Metropolitan, near Lajeunesse Street.

Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre confirmed the casualty Tuesday evening.

The accident happened around 4 p.m., resulting in several explosions.

Multiple vehicles and at least one truck caught fire.

The flames were contained but Highway 40 was closed in both directions above Papineau Avenue.

WATCH: Amateur video captures fiery aftermath of truck explosion in Montreal

Click to play video: 'Amateur video captures fiery aftermath of truck explosion in Montreal' Amateur video captures fiery aftermath of truck explosion in Montreal
Amateur video captures fiery aftermath of truck explosion in Montreal – Aug 10, 2016

“A tanker hit several vehicles and caught fire,” said Audrey-Anne Bilodeau, a spokesperson with the Sûreté du Québec.

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Several people were taken to hospital suffering from minor injuries and shock.

The eastbound highway has since reopened; the westbound lanes remain closed from Christophe-Colomb Avenue because the fire was so strong it melted the asphalt.

“It’s really hot. The fire is burning,” said Global News reporter Anne Leclair, who was in the neighbouring FTQ building at the time.

“I stopped hearing explosions so I imagine the entire truck has stopped exploding and now it’s just this fire that’s burning along Highway 40.”

“There’s smoke billowing in the air, it’s like the apocalypse. The sky is black.”

“I live about four blocks down. I heard a bunch of explosions and I came out to see. It’s crazy,” said Susan Paquet.

“I can imagine the Metropolitan will be closed for days now.”

Firefighters battle a blaze following a fiery accident on Highway 40, Tuesday, August 9, 2016. Luc Rancourt
Firefighters battle a blaze following a fiery accident on Highway 40, Tuesday, August 9, 2016. Luc Rancourt
A truck catches fire following an accident on Highway 40, Tuesday, August 9, 2016. Luc Rancourt
Residents evacuate following a fiery explosion on Highway 40, above Saint-Denis Street, Tuesday, August 9, 2016. Anne Leclair/Global News
Residents evacuate following a fiery explosion on Highway 40, above Saint-Denis Street, Tuesday, August 9, 2016. Anne Leclair/Global News

“I helped evacuate and relocate a daycare and walked two blocks with two babies in my arms,” said Leclair.

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The cause of the accident is unknown.

Officials from Transports Quebec are inspecting the highway to see how much damage it sustained during the crash and fire.

rachel.lau@globalnews.ca

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