A dump truck's load caught fire early Tuesday morning, forcing the driver to dump the fiery load on to 51st Street near Elliot Road in Ahwatukee Foothills, officials said.

The dump truck, driven by a private company, was driving on its route when apparently something in the garbage caused the load to catch on fire, said Jonathan Jacobs, a spokesman for the Phoenix Fire Department.

The load had to be dumped to save the truck, he said, adding that when crews arrived the truck had been fully removed from the fire and all that was left was a large pile of smoldering trash. Firefighters placed foam on the pile and allowed it to burn out, Jacobs said.

Though the fire created a large mess, no one was hurt in the accident.

Small ashes can create a large problem for dump truck drivers because of all the pressure used to compact the trash, Jacobs said.

The trash did not cause too many traffic back ups and was picked up by 11 a.m.

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