Truck driver in Spooner crash identified |

Truck driver in Spooner crash identified

A semi-trailer involved in a fatal crash Thursday that closed U.S. Highway 50 over Spooner Summit until early Friday morning was headed to Detroit.

Nevada Highway Patrol investigators said, Roger Lefeber, 53, of Fondulac, Wisc., was killed after he lost his brakes midway down the mountain toward Carson City. Lefeber failed to make the runaway truck ramp. His truck jackknifed, flipped over a dividing concrete barrier and into oncoming traffic. The tractor trailer dumped its load of fruit, and the truck burst into flames killing Lefeber.

Jerry Hinely, 44, of Carson City couldn’t avoid the tractor trailer, and crashed into it with his pickup truck. Two couples on motorcycles were also caught in the aftermath. Daniel and Shirley Elrod, of Alta Loma, Calif., and Cletus and Lynn Brisco, of Visilia, Calif., had to be dug out from under the fruit.

The Elrods, Hinely, and Cletus Brisco were taken to Washoe Medical Center. Lynn Brisco was taken to Carson-Tahoe Hospital. On Friday, the Elrods and Briscos were listed in satisfactory condition. Hinely was serious and stable in Washoe’s intensive care unit.

Investigators believe the fire after the crash was caused by a refrigeration unit behind the cab. The truck was part of the Gulf Northern Transport fleet out of Wisconsin. Investigators said Lefeber picked up the load of fruit in Stockton, Calif.

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