Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue has revealed a mechanical fault sparked yesterday’s lorry fire at Sutton Bridge.
A fire and rescue spokesman said the articulated lorry and its load, 26 tonnes of rice, were severely damaged.
Firefighters from Lincolnshire and Norfolk used two hose reel jets and compressed foam to put out the blaze.
Traffic was brought to a standstill shortly before 3pm. One lane reopened around 4.10pm but traffic wasn’t back to normal until 7.30pm.
• Tuesday: Traffic has started moving again on the A17 following this afternoon’s lorry fire at Sutton Bridge, but it is one-way working only.
Resident Jenny Rowe said queues started moving at about 4.10pm after police arrived and directed traffic into the south lane, away from the lorry.
She said there were four fire engines sent to tackle the blaze and there was still smoke to be seen at 4pm.
• Tuesday: The A17 leading to Sutton Bridge is at a standstill following a lorry fire near Cross Keys Bridge.
Village resident Jenny Rowe raised the alarm as she was driving onto the bridge from the Norfolk direction and saw the lorry coming towards her with smoke billowing out from under the cab.
She flashed her car headlights to alert the driver, who pulled into a nearby lay-by, and then dialled 999 to call the emergency services.
Mrs Rowe said she believes the driver escaped unhurt but thinks the articulated lorry suffered extensive damage.
As the lorry driver pulled up, she heard the sound of a “big bang”.
Firefighters were on the spot within ten minutes.
The drama began at 2.55pm but, moments ago, Mrs Rowe said the road was still queued in both directions.