Truck Driver Killed in Alabamaby Jana Ritter - Published: 6/12/2013
Four vehicles collided when entering a construction zone at mile marker 18, three miles south of Shorter in Macon County, Alabama. Three commercial semi-trucks and a mini-van were involved in a domino effect crash that killed 31-year old Steven Fox of Madison, Georgia. He was killed on impact, when the milk-tank 2004 Freightliner he was driving hit another 18-wheeler, a red 2007 Peterbilt with a load of bricks. The brick hauling semi then collided with a 2012 Toyota Sienna mini-van, which struck another semi, 2003 Freightliner.
Sgt. Steven Jarrett, a spokesman for the Alabama State Troopers, said the crash happened in a construction zone, and one of the vehicles apparently failed to slow down in time and caused a chain reaction of collisions.
"The driver of the red 18-wheeler was life-flighted (serious condition), the two adults in the passenger van were transported by ambulance (non life threatening) to area hospitals," said Sgt. Steve Jarrett with the Alabama State Troopers. The semi-driver in the 2003 Freightliner walked away unharmed, but the accident left a mess across I-85 South.
The bricks on the red semi-truck collided into the driver side of the milk-tank semi-truck and also spilled over the interstate. The Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT), state troopers and the Montgomery Sheriff's Office cleaned up the scene and controlled traffic.
"There's a lot of load spillage, being bricks, and a traffic fatality, it's going to take some time, but thankfully ALDOT is on the scene and they've got traffic detailed," Sgt. Jarrett said.
Drivers travelling in the direction of the accident on I-85 southbound were rerouted for eight hours to the Shorter Exit to get off at US-80 and bypass the crash. Drivers also travelling northbound experienced some delays with slower traffic passing the scene. The southbound lanes of Interstate 85 were blocked for several hours with ALDOT diverting southbound traffic at Exit 22 (Shorter) onto U.S. 80. Jarrett said drivers need to take heed when they see markers such as orange barrels indicating construction zones."That's why speeds are reduced and why you have to use extra caution," Jarrett said.
State Troopers say an off-duty trooper witnessed the accident, but an official report won't be released for at least three days. Nothing further is available at this time as State Troopers continue to investigate.
The driver of the 2007 Peterbilt was transported by helicopter to an area hospital, while the driver and lone passenger of the Toyota were transported to an area hospital by ambulance, Jarrett said.