Drivers starting the Christmas getaway faced long tailbacks on the M40 when a lorry-load of beer caught fire.
It happened at about 11:30 GMT, forcing the closure of the southbound carriageway between Cherwell Valley Services and Bicester. Highways England reopened one lane southbound at about 12:40.
Witnesses said bottles of Stella were exploding in the flames.
Eddie Stobart Driver Training tweeted to say the driver was safe.
We can confirm that one of our lorries has caught fire on the #M40. We can assure everyone that the driver is safe. We’re investigating and are sorry for any delays caused by this incident.— Eddie Stobart Training Academy (@EddieStobartTA) December 22, 2017
On Twitter, Helen Smith said "Driver out but bad vehicle fire on M40. Bottles of Stella exploding! Very scary stuff."
At 16:50 Highways England said long delays are "expected to continue until later this evening".