A highway in Oregon this past week fell victim to the wrath of a few hundred Pacific hagfish, also known as slime eels. On Thursday, a truck transporting the animals spewed them out onto the busy U.S. Highway 101 causing a four-car pileup, and leaving one heck of a mess for clean up crews.
More than 13 containers of slime eels were being transported by a flatbed truck when the driver reportedly slammed on his brakes to avoid a construction zone. One of the containers hit a car traveling the opposite direction, while the rest of the containers spilled off the back of the truck, causing the pileup and leaving more than 7,500 pounds (3,401 kilograms) on eels on the road.
Thankfully, only one minor injury was sustained by the driver of the oncoming vehicle throughout the entire ordeal – the eels themselves weren’t so lucky. Hundreds of the creatures were pictured on the road, courtesy of the Oregon State Police Twitter account, leaving a thick, white slime in their wake. The accident happened at around noon, but workers were able to move quickly enough to clear the road by 3:30 PM.
"When Hagfish become stressed, they secrete a slime, which can be seen in photos on the vehicles in the highway,” said the Oregon State Police in a statement. Firefighters were called to the scene and used hoses and construction equipment to clean up the mess, which you can see in the video below. The eels were reportedly being shipped to Korea as a delicacy for diners from a Pacific hagfish nursery.
Source: Oregon State Police