A military transport vehicle burst into flames Friday on Interstate 5 in Oceanside, creating a traffic tangle for miles.

The 10-wheel Marine Corps equipment-hauling apparatus caught fire near state Route 78. The  Oceanside Fire Department said the incident took place about 1 p.m.

“The truck was carrying two Marines and no cargo and was returning from a trip down to San Diego when the crew heard a loud bang and immediately saw smoke and fire in the rear of the cab,” Division Chief Pete Lawrence said. “They were able to pull the unit to the shoulder, set the brake and evacuate to safety.”

It took firefighters about a half-hour to extinguish the blaze. It also caused several of the cargo vehicle’s tires to loudly explode.

In addition, the fire set a small patch of roadside vegetation ablaze. Authorities reported no injuries.

Officials blocked three lanes of the freeway to protect crews working the fire, Lawrence said. The closure caused a major jam on northbound I-5, along with westbound state Route 78.

Preliminary indications suggest that a severed hydraulic line caused the fire. The monetary losses could  total at least $100,000, the division chief said.

Lawrence identified the damaged vehicle as a variant of the Marine Oshkosh Logistic Vehicle System Replacement (LVSR).

– City News Service