A tractor trailer rig crashed along Interstate 81 in Foster Township, Schuylkill County, early Thursday morning, March 7, causing one lane of travel to be closed for about five hours and the driver facing multiple motor vehicle code charges.

State police at Frackville said Ernesto Luis Rivero Blanco, of Lake Worth, Fla., was driving a 2005 Freightliner Century tractor with Wabash van trailer northbound about 3:30 a.m. when he fell asleep. The rig went onto the east berm and struck a metal guard rail and continued north against the rail for about 235 feet. It then truck a mile marker post sign and which time Blanco attempted to steer back onto the road.

The rig then traveled an additional 165 feet as it crossed both lanes and went onto the west berm. The rig then struck a rock embankment with the front end, causing it to spin counter-clockwise and roll over onto the right side. The rig came to rest with the tractor portion completely blocking th left lane facing south east.

Blanco was not injured but damages were termed extensive to the tractor. Assisting troopers at the scene were volunteers from the Goodwill Hose Co., Frackville, and Minersville ambulance personnel. Also on scene was PennDOT and state police motor carrier enforcement officers.