09/08/2010 // West Palm Beach, FL, US // Sandra Quinlan // Sandra Quinlan
Essex, MO—An 18-vehicle crash near Essex left 26 people injured, four seriously, around 12 p.m. Monday, September 6, 2010. The injurious chain-reaction collision occurred in the eastbound lanes of U.S. 60, as reported by the Heartland News.
According to troopers from the Missouri State Highway Patrol (MSHP), a farmer who was apparently burning trash when the field accidentally caught fire. The blaze sent thick smoke into the air, consequently hindering visibility for many drivers in the area.
Charleston resident Gary Vannoy alleged, “It was just pure smoke… You couldn’t see the road. You couldn’t see anything. I mean it was thick.”
MSHP officials reportedly stated around three vehicles crashed into one another initially. However, it wasn’t too long before a tractor-trailer careened into those vehicles. The collision eventually led to the pile-up of a total of 18 vehicles.
Emergency medical services (EMS) personnel responded to the scene to aid those injured in the wreck.
Reports indicated 26 of the 33 individuals involved in the crash sustained injuries ranging from non-life threatening to serious. Two of the injured accident victims were reportedly flown to nearby hospitals via medical helicopter.
Bob Carroll, a volunteer firefighter who was one of the first people at the scene, contended, “Some people been throwed out on the ground.”
Springfield resident Kristen Blackstock was involved in the 18-vehicle crash and stated, “A car behind us sideswiped us and then from there they kept crashing into the back of us.”
“We got out and we started running to get out of the smoke to get out of the way and then a semi came through and plowed through all of the cars,” Blackstock added.
While Highway Patrol authorities are investigating the pile-up, they alleged the crash could have been far worse had it not been for the semi truck driver’s ability to stop his rig.
“He (truck driver) did an excellent job of controlling his truck, maintained it in his lane… Several feet of skid marks, but he stopped before he got to them,” said Sgt. Dale Moreland of the State Highway Patrol.
A full probe into the U.S. 60 crash is expected to be underway.
Legal News Reporter: Sandra Quinlan- Legal News for Missouri Auto Accident Lawyers.
Phone: (866) 598-1315