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Banana Truck Crash Destroys Historic Seekonk Tavern

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SEEKONK (CBS/AP) — An out-of-control tractor-trailer carrying bananas in southeastern Massachusetts has crashed into a natural gas main and ignited an explosion, setting fire to an 18th-century building that housed a tavern and destroying it.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Kim Tunnicliffe reports.

Firefighters say the truck crashed Sunday morning next to the Old Grist Mill Tavern in Seekonk, just east of Providence, R.I.

Fire from the explosion spread to the tavern, whose website says the building was constructed in 1745 for grinding grain raised by local farmers.

The truck driver has been taken to a hospital in Providence. It’s unclear how serious his injuries are.

Bulldozers have been brought in to tear down the building.

The owner of the tavern wants to rebuild.

“We bought it, and two weeks later, we had the 500-year flood. Rain stopped Wednesday afternoon and we were open Thursday. I look at it as ‘When can I get opened?'” said Greg Esmay, the owner.

The cause of the accident is under investigation.

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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