Semi overturns, snarls SR99 traffic
For The Madera Tribune
A semi truck and trailer overturned Thursday morning on northbound State Route 99, blocking both lanes of traffic just north of Robertson Boulevard, forcing traffic onto the shoulder of the busy roadway for several hours according to the California Highway Patrol.
The driver of a semi truck sustained unknown injuries after the truck and trailer he was operating crashed and overturned on State Route 99, just north of Robertson Boulevard.
The wrecked cab and trailer blocked both lanes of northbound traffic on State Route 99 at about 11:30 Thursday morning, bringing traffic to a halt on the busy roadway, according to the California Highway Patrol.
CHP officer Gregg Rodriguez said witnesses driving behind saw the truck suddenly veer from the right hand slow lane all the way across faster moving traffic, hit the guardrail at highway speed, jack knife and then rotate to a south facing direction with the flatbed trailer loaded with cardboard coming to rest across both of the northbound lanes.
“It appears to be a solo vehicle crash, with the cause unknown at this time. Speed does not appear to be a factor. All traffic came to a standstill. Fortunately there were no secondary crashes. Traffic was (self) detouring onto the right hand shoulder. The crash was witnessed, but the investigation into the cause of the crash is ongoing.” Rodriguez said.
The male driver was able to extricate himself shortly after the truck overturned. He was taken to Madera Community Hospital.
All factors such as mechanical failure, medical issues, distracted driving, fatigue or other impairment are being reviewed in the incident, Rodriguez said.
The crash snarled and backed up northbound traffic for over four hours as emergency crews worked to investigate the scene, upright the semi truck and trailer and then clear the roadway. A small amount of diesel fuel and oil was spilled off the roadway, on the shoulder and into the center divide.
Officers recommend that drivers slow down, always wear their seat belts and be aware of other traffic on any roadway.