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Uinta County

Five Semis Involved In Crash Near Evanston, One Person Extricated

in News/Accident
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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

One man had to be removed from the wreckage Tuesday morning after five semi-trucks were involved in a collision on icy Interstate 80 near Evanston.

Uinta County Fire and Ambulance Chief Administrative Officer Eric Quinney told Cowboy State Daily on Tuesday that it took about two hours to extricate the co-driver from one of the semis, as he had been asleep in the “sleeper” portion of the truck when the crash happened.

“They had to stabilize the truck, since it was the only one that overturned, with specialty equipment and make the proper cuts to get the co-driver out,” Quinney said. “Once we got him out, besides being cold, he was relatively unscathed. It was pretty miraculous.”

Quinney added that firefighters were talking with the man as they worked to extricate him, and he told them during the process that he was wedged in fairly tightly in the sleeper, but was unharmed.

None of the other drivers involved in the collision were harmed.

Once he was extricated, medical professionals checked the man for injuries. He declined transport to a hospital and instead stayed on scene to talk with the Wyoming Highway Patrol.

The truck the co-driver was trapped in was hauling products like almond milk. The other trucks involved included an Amazon Prime semi-truck, an RC Willey home furnishings truck and a Ryder truck, all of which were headed westbound at the time of the crash.

Quinney was unsure which of the trucks was the first in the pile-up, but noted that the accident occurred on a stretch of the interstate that turns into a hill, which can be dangerous in snowy and icy weather.

“I would imagine the accident was a chain reaction type of thing,” he said. “But it was awesome that our firefighters worked hard and put all of their training to the test, and it all worked out in the end.”

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Vandals Destroy Phone Lines In Uinta County, Causing 911 Outage

in News/Crime
10703

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Vandals destroyed fiber-optic lines and materials in rural Uinta County this weekend, cutting off 911 telephone service for some county residents.

On Friday, Century Link experienced an outage that disrupted phone and internet services to many customers in the Bridger Valley area, with some outages lasting until Sunday.

During Century Link’s investigation into the outage, workers discovered “mass” intentional damage to fiber-optic lines and materials in rural Bridger Valley. It appeared that the damage was caused by multiple vehicles.

As of Monday, the damages were estimated to be in excess of tens of thousands of dollars, with hundreds of customers affected.

This incident is being investigated by the Uinta County Sheriff’s Office.

If anyone has information about the individuals that may be involved, please contact the Uinta County Sheriff’s Office 307-783-1000, or the information can be reported anonymously to Crime Stoppers by text: 307-708-2274. Information leading to an arrest could be eligible for a reward. 

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Police: Driver Claimed He Choked on Candy Bar Before Crash, Was Likely Asleep

in News
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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

A truck driver claimed he choked on a candy bar before crashing his semi-truck in Uinta County earlier this week, but police think he was likely asleep at the wheel.

Bridger Valley Fire and Emergency Medical Services responded to a semi- rollover with the driver trapped inside on Sunday evening near Lyman on Interstate 80.

It took emergency personnel around 90 minutes to extract the truck driver, who was taken to Evanston Regional Hospital for injuries he sustained in the crsh.

Lt. Matt Harnell of the Uinta County Sheriff’s Office told Cowboy State Daily on Wednesday that the driver told police that he was choking on a candy bar when he crossed a road lane, then overcorrected in steering before the truck flipped.

However, police don’t believe that this was the case.

“They think he was asleep,” Harnell said. “We see it a lot, not even just with truck drivers, but with a person in any type of vehicle. You just start looking at the evidence at the scene and put everything together.”

Harnell also said that the driver received broken legs in the collision due to the steering wheel collapsing on them when the semi flipped.

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