October 9, 2019 / 6:34 AM / 9 days ago

Australia gasps as truckload of favorite brew in highway spill

SYDNEY (Reuters) - A truck filled with beer rolled on Australia’s busiest highway, spilling thousands of cans of the amber liquid and closing part of the road for hours, police said.

The single-trailer truck went off the road on its way from Queensland state to New South Wales, about 300 km (186 miles) north of Sydney on Tuesday.

Its trailer, full of Victoria Bitter beer, rolled, spilling “a large number” cans, a police chief inspector, Tony Power, told Reuters.

The driver was not hurt though some of the tinnies were, sending beer gushing onto the road.

“Some of them were squashed as they came out”, Power said of the tins of Australia’s best-selling brew.

The highway’s south-bound lanes were closed for an hour and a half while emergency workers cleared the scene, but one lane was closed for seven hours, said Power.

The driver, 24, tested negative for drugs and alcohol and police suspected fatigue may have been a factor.

Victoria Bitter, or VB as it is commonly known, routinely ranks as one of Australia’s top-selling beers, and footage of the accident was widely shared on social media - including by the beer company’s owner, Anheuser Busch Inbev NV.

“WARNING: Graphic image,” a Facebook account apparently run by VB wrote below a photo of the ill-fated truck, its contents strewn over the road.

“Pleased to report driver didn’t require medical transport. Understand there were 3,000 locals ready to help,” the post said.

But Power said police had been on the lookout for members of the public taking spilled beer cans and there had been none.

“Maybe all the people weren’t fans of VB,” he said.

“If it had been Reschs there would have been a riot,” he said, apparently referring to his favorite beer.

Reporting by Byron Kaye; Editing by Robert Birsel

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