Trucker killed in Spooner accident |

Trucker killed in Spooner accident

A fiery crash involving a semitrailer, two motorcyclists and a pick-up truck closed Highway 50 over Spooner Summit for more than seven hours Thursday night.

One person was killed and three were injured after the semi driver lost his brakes midway down the mountain toward Carson City. The driver tried but failed to negotiate a runaway truck ramp. The truck jackknifed, flipping over the concrete barrier dividing the four-lane highway and into oncoming rush-hour traffic. The tractor trailer collided with a pickup truck and two motorcyclists, spilling grapes and blueberries all over the highway.

The truck burst into flames, killing the driver.

The driver of the pickup and the two motorist were injured.

Both the motorcyclists had to be dug out from under the fruit.

All three were transported to Washoe Medical Center, where their injuries are not believed to be life threatening.

One motorist who witnessed the accident said the brakes on the truck were flaming just before the crash.

Authorities believe the fire after the crash was caused from refrigeration unit behind cab.

John Roberts, of South Lake Tahoe, was the third car behind the crash.

“When we got there, people were just kind of getting out of their cars, looking,” Roberts said.

He estimated it took about 15 minutes for emergency personnel to arrive. In the meantime, people were trying to help the driver out of the semi.

He heard a few small explosions before police cleared the scene, but the truck never went up.

“It’s a big mess,” NHP spokesman Tony Almarez said.

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