DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. -- A large semi fire blocked both west and eastbound lanes of I-285 late Wednesday night.

The fire first erupted on the westbound side of I-285 near Chamblee-Dunwoody Road but an explosion threw debris across into eastbound lanes as well.

DeKalb fire officials said the fire began as the driver was pulled to the side of the road regarding a brake issue. Officials told 11Alive's Chris Hopper that the brakes set the truck's tires on fire. While the driver was trying to extinguish the burning tire, it exploded in the driver's face.

Photos | Semi truck explodes on I-285

The driver is in critical condition and was taken to an area hospital for treatment. He was listed in critical condition.

Officials said the truck was carrying hospital supplies, including oxygen tanks. Several of the tanks exploded, throwing debris onto both sides of Interstate 285, as well as Cotillion Drive, running adjacent to the roadway. HAZMAT crews were called to the scene.

By 10:30 p.m. eastbound lanes had cleared but westbound I-285 was still limited to a single lane as crews begin work removing the remains of the truck from the interstate.