A two-vehicle crash involving a big rig on the southbound Santa Ana (5) Freeway in the La Mirada area Monday prompted closure of lanes in both directions as a precaution while crews worked to clear the scene, causing a major traffic tie-up affecting scores of motorists.
The non-injury crash was reported at about 10:15 a.m. south of Valley View Avenue, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department.
Some fuel spilled onto the southbound lanes and then spread onto the northbound lanes, and a hazardous materials team was sent to the scene, the fire department reported.
Several southbound lanes were blocked — along with all northbound lanes — as crews worked to remove debris and about 300 gallons of spilled diesel fuel and non-toxic glycolic acid, a substance used in beauty supply products.
At about 1:30 p.m., all southbound lanes also were closed for the cleanup effort, according to Caltrans.
Northbound traffic on the freeway was diverted onto Beach Boulevard while southbound traffic was diverted onto Carmenita Avenue until 7:30 p.m., according to the California Highway Patrol.