KREM 2 News crew witnesses semi-truck crash

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by KREM.com

KREM.com

Posted on April 21, 2011 at 12:58 AM

KELLOGG, Idaho -- A semi-truck lost control and ran down an embankment on Interstate 90 Wednesday night near Kellogg, Idaho.  A KREM 2 News crew traveling back from Mullan witnessed the entire crash.

The crash happened around 8:15 p.m.  The semi-truck was traveling a couple cars in front of the KREM 2 News crew on I-90 westbound.  It then turned its wheels and veered off the road.  It went over the guard rail and fell about 35 feet down an embankment where it landed on its side.

The KREM 2 News crew pulled over immediately along with a couple other drivers.  KREM 2's Rebecca Perry got on the phone with 911 while her photographer ran down the hill to the truck.  He and another witness managed to pull the driver out of the truck.  They worried that it might catch fire.

The semi-truck driver appeared disoriented but he was able to get up and walk around.  A wife and her husband noticed the truck driver had problems about five miles back.

"We just saw him go to the side and jerk back.  And then he started losing momentum.  He wasn't going fast at all.  By the time we got to Kellogg, he kept going slower and slower.  He gradually snugged the side and rolled it," said Lorenda Youngwirth who witnessed the crash.

The truck landed within several feet of a house.  If it had not slowed down at the end, it likely would have crashed into the house.  It did crush a fence in the backyard.  The driver was not immediately transported to the hospital in an ambulance.  Idaho State Troopers did take him into custody.  They said he could not speak English.  Troopers said big rig operators, by law, must be able to speak English.

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