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Montreal driver charged after truck crash, powdered nickel spill on Hwy 17

A trucker from Montreal has been charged with careless driving after the tractor-trailer he was operating lost control, rolled over and spilled its load of powdered nickel on Highway 17 near Deep River, Ont. on Wednesday afternoon.
A trucker from Montreal has been charged with careless driving after the tractor-trailer he was operating lost control, rolled over and spilled its load of powdered nickel on Highway 17 near Deep River, Ont. on Wednesday afternoon. J. Heffern / Renfrew County Paramedic Service

A trucker from Montreal has been charged with careless driving after the tractor-trailer he was operating lost control, rolled over and spilled its load of powdered nickel on Highway 17 in the Laurentian Hills on Wednesday afternoon, causing a 12-hour road closure.

The crash occurred on the highway between Brouse Road and Bass Lake Road near Deep River, Ont. around 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) reported.

Police confirmed Thursday morning that the stretch of Highway 17 has been re-opened after they closed it to traffic in both directions and had drivers use local detours while they investigated the incident and cleaned up the roadway.

READ MORE: Highway 17 closed north of Petawawa after truck rolls, spilling powdered nickel: OPP

While police had initially expected to re-open the highway late Wednesday afternoon, it took almost 12 hours to investigate the crash, remove the truck and clean up the spilled nickel using a vacuum truck, OPP said in a news release.

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Const. Shawn Peever did not specify how much of the metallic powder was spilled but said Wednesday it did not pose any public safety concerns.

Jean Francois Gagnon, 39, has been charged under the Highway Traffic Act.

The OPP said the tractor-trailer was travelling westbound on Highway 17 when it rolled over. Gagnon was the only person in the truck and he was not injured in the collision, police said.