DOVER — A bump in the Spaulding Turnpike is believed to have jarred two latches on a city of Portsmouth truck loose, causing a chain to break and a load of cardboard to fall into the highway Friday morning, said Portsmouth Public Works Director Peter Rice.
The road, near exit 6 in Dover, was briefly closed at about 8 a.m. Friday when state police responded for the trash spill.
Rice said the city truck was hauling a load of cardboard to Rochester for recycling, inside a container secured with a pair of latches, as well as a chain for backup safety. He said both hinges let go, the chain broke and the container contents spilled onto the highway. He said the driver believes the hinges were jarred loose when he hit the bump in an area under construction.
"All the safety hooks were on," Rice said.
A crew from Severino Construction was working nearby and used some of their equipment to move the trash off to the side, Rice said. A crew from Portsmouth also responded and removed the material.
"Fortunately no one was hurt," Rice said, who reported the container has been taken offline for the time being.
He said "incidents happen," the city will review this one and determine what future measures can be taken to prevent it from happening again.
The cardboard will still be recycled, Rice said.