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Hazmat crew called to vehicle crash in Washington Co., WI | By Lt. Ryan Herman

April 19, 2024 – Town of Kewaskum, WI – On Friday, April 19 at 8:19 a.m. the Washington County Sheriff’s Office responded to a one vehicle crash on Highland Drive in the Town of Kewaskum.

Callers informed our communication officers the involved vehicle was pulling a trailer loaded with two additional vehicles. The towed vehicles had come off the overturned trailer and were upside down and smoking in the ditch. The uninjured operator remained on scene.

On arrival of Washington County Sheriff deputies and Kewaskum Fire personnel, one of the upside-down towed vehicles (large work van) was observed to be smoking. Upon further inspection, a pressurized tank (approximately 100 gallons) of liquid nitrogen was in the rear of the van.

Based on this, fire personnel requested assistance from the Washington County Hazmat team. Hazmat found the tank was off gassing as designed.

The off gassing eliminated built up pressure inside the tank, keeping the tank from rupturing. Once the vehicle was up righted, it was removed. There is no public safety concern because of the liquid nitrogen off gassing.

Crash investigation found the involved vehicle to be traveling north on Highland Drive between CTH H and STH 28.

The operator alleges there was a southbound vehicle operating near the center of the roadway, resulting in him moving slightly to the edge of the road.

This caused his trailer tires to enter the steep declining ditch line and disconnect from the truck, rolling over onto its side. There is no evidence to support the southbound vehicle being present or if present, violating any road rule.


The operator chose Highland Drive rather than remaining on the designated detour route due to area construction in the Village of Kewaskum. Highland Drive is not a roadway that a vehicle of this type should be operating on. As a reminder, vehicle operators should follow detour routes. These routes are chosen with public safety and roadway capacity in mind.

To facilitate scene clean up, Highland drive was closed to traffic for approximately 3 ½ hours. The Wisconsin State Patrol also assisted with inspection of the involved vehicle. Enforcement action is being taken.

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