Interstate 95 South in Old Lyme was closed for hours Friday morning after a tractor-trailer carrying 80,000 pounds of frozen crab legs was engulfed in fire.
State police responded to the highway between exits 70 and 71 around 4 a.m., when they received a report of a tractor-trailer brake fire.
Around 200 gallons of diesel fuel spilled during the incident and the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection determined that it was not safe to open the road until the fuel was cleaned up.
Drivers were stuck in a 3-mile backup until the road reopened at 11:20 a.m.
After viewing evidence at the scene, receiving statements from the driver, Myron Hawkins, 54, of Moreno Valley, California, and inspecting the truck, Hawkins was charged with reckless driving.
Police said Hawkins was at the New England Produce Centre in Boston on Tuesday and called Freightliner to get a mechanic to replace the brakes on his trailer.
The work was done on Tuesday and Wednesday.
On Thursday, Hawkins left the center, police said, and noticed that his brakes are were tight, so he did some work on them and was heading to Branford to get the brakes checked when the fire started.
He was brought to Troop F and is being held because he was unable to post bond.
He will be arraigned in GA-10 in New London.