Wreckage from a tractor-trailer crash littered the road at the intersection of Moffat County roads 51 and 32 on Thursday morning near Colowyo Mine. The driver, an adult male, died on the scene.

Photo by Bridget Manley

Wreckage from a tractor-trailer crash littered the road at the intersection of Moffat County roads 51 and 32 on Thursday morning near Colowyo Mine. The driver, an adult male, died on the scene.

Tractor-trailer rollover claims driver

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At a glance ...

Driver pronounced dead in tractor-trailer rollover Thursday near Colowyo Mine.

The name, age and residence of the adult male could not be confirmed Thursday.

The tractor-trailer was hauling a tanker believed to contain crude oil.

The crash sparked a wildland fire that consumed less than an acre.

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Emergency agencies responded Thursday to the scene of a one-vehicle wreck involving a tractor-trailer hauling a substance believed to be crude oil, Trooper Heather Cobler, a Colorado State Patrol public information officer, reported. The substance runoff ignited and started a small fire that consumed less than an acre.

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Emergency response crews gather at the site of a tractor-trailer crash Thursday morning near Colowyo Mine. Officials from the Colorado State Patrol, Moffat County Sheriff’s Office, State Patrol Hazmat Team, The Memorial Hospital ambulance service, Craig Fire/Rescue and the Moffat County Hazmat Team responded to the one-vehicle wreck.

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Emergency responders pour water on a hot spot in the wreckage of a tractor-trailer Thursday morning near Colowyo Mine. Craig Fire/Rescue firefighters arrived on the scene about 9:30 a.m. and found the vehicle engulfed in flames, Battalion Chief Dennis Jones said.

A tractor-trailer rollover Thursday morning near Colowyo Mine left one man dead and sparked a wildland fire, officials from Craig Fire/Rescue and the Colorado State Patrol reported.

The one-vehicle wreck was called in at 9:04 a.m. and took place at the intersection of Moffat County roads 51 and 32, according to a news release from Craig/Fire Rescue.

The driver, an adult male, died on the scene, Trooper Heather Cobler, a State Patrol public information officer, wrote in an email.

The name, age and residence of the driver could not be confirmed Thursday afternoon.

Dennis Jones, battalion chief with Craig Fire/Rescue, said firefighters, including him, arrived on the scene at about 9:30 a.m. By the time they arrived, he said, the vehicle was completely engulfed in flames.

It’s believed the driver lost control as he drove around a corner, said Lt. Matt Beckett of Craig Fire/Rescue.

The vehicle was towing a tanker trailer carrying what may have been crude oil, Cobler said, although the substance had not been positively identified Thursday afternoon. The substance caught fire in the wreck and started a small wildland fire, which was extinguished by noon.

The blaze burned less than an acre around the truck, Beckett said.

Crews from the Colorado State Patrol, State Patrol Hazmat team, Moffat County Sheriff’s Office and Moffat County Hazmat Team also responded to the scene, he added.

The Memorial Hospital’s ambulance service was called out to the scene, but no one was transported to the hospital.

As of Thursday, it was unknown if any passengers were in the vehicle.

The extent of the fire made it difficult to piece together details of the crash, responders said.

Crews were unable to determine what company the truck was driving for or what type of vehicle it was because the fire had effaced all identifying marks.

“It’s an unfortunate accident,” Jones said, “especially on a holiday.”

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Comments

Donald J Kaleta 2 years, 5 months ago

Please search DEFORMABLE KINGPIN that explains a simple to understand solution to forbid a tractor to follow into destruction during rollover events. The concept is the same as to why you have fuses or circuit breakers in electrical systems in your home, office or car -- a failsafe -- to prevent further destruction. This innovation is a simple modification of a component, the trailer’s coupling kingpin, whose design has been a standard for over 70 years, which can be made to deform and not allow an extremely stable tractor to follow to destruction when the trailer, that is the dominant controlling force, is in IMMINENT peril for rollover, that includes also blown over tractor trailers. The NHTSA & FMCSA continue to turn their backs and ignore their past funded research conclusions, as the trucking industry evolves greater unstable tractor trailers on our highways that have a primary attribute for increasing payload capacity. These catastrophes will continue to occur in thousands of accidents of this type each year as they have in the past, and continue to cause infrastructure damage that will harm and kill many hundreds of tractor occupants annually. These combination vehicles are incendiary bombs when carrying flammable material in tankers, and the flash point for these fires starts with the tractor’s involvement. A statement received from the FMCSA states “There are a variety of technologies for preventing rollover crashes and we believe motor carriers should have as much flexibility as possible in selecting technologies to prevent crashes.” Clearly the fox is allowed to guard the hen house!!! The harm, death & destruction will continue with combination vehicle rollover accidents. Donald J. Kaleta

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