Semi-truck carrying empty energy drink cans catches fire, snarls morning traffic

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A semi-truck was lugging 5,000 pounds of new, but empty, cans of an energy drink before it erupted into flames causing a major traffic headache during the morning rush hour.

Florida Highway Patrol troopers said the driver, a 45-year-old man from Virginia, was traveling southbound on Interstate 75 in a 2012 Volvo tractor-trailer. Around 4:15 a.m., a mechanical issue started to develop near the back axle, igniting a fire near Fletcher Avenue. 

Troopers said the driver attempted to contain the fire, but it didn't work. The fire quick spread throughout the vehicle and was later extinguished by Hillsborough County firefighters.

The view from SkyFOX showed a gutted trailer with a scorched tractor. Piles of cans spilled from all openings of the trailer. Crews were seen shoveling and removing the thousands of pounds of empty cans, meant to be filled with Bang energy drink. A bright green, lower-case "b" was visible on most of the cans. Troopers said the labels called for purple guava pear and peach mango flavors.