Fatal chain of events: Woman killed after milk truck overturns

News-DemocratMay 15, 2014 

A township highway truck lost a tailgate Thursday morning, causing a milk tanker truck to swerve, hit two cars and overturn onto one of them, killing a woman near Edwardsville, police said.

Illinois State Trooper Calvin Dye said the accident was at 10:25 a.m. on Illinois 140 just east of Illinois 159 when an eastbound tractor-trailer hauling milk struck a tailgate in the road that had fallen from a westbound dump truck belonging to Foster Township. The milk truck overturned onto a passing car, with both ending up in a ditch by the side of the road.

Foster Township Highway Commissioner Patrick Maher could not be reached for comment.

Dye said the driver of the car was trapped in the vehicle under the milk truck and was declared dead by the Madison County Coroner's office. She was later identified as Lori A. Vinyard, 52, of Hamel.

A second vehicle, an Oldsmobile Alero, was also sitting by the side of the road with front-end damage. The air bag was deployed.

Milk truck driver Greg Street said he was just scratched up in the crash. He said there was no time to react.

"I saw it was like a flash. Something coming off the back of his truck. It was close. There wasn't any time to respond," Street said. "The next I know it went under the steer tires of my truck and bounced me up and the next I know I was going off into the field and I was on my side."

Jacob Strohbeck of Alton was driving the township dump truck, police said.

Several people were taken to the hospital after the crash, Holiday Shores Fire Chief Steve Cooper said. He said state troopers are investigating and reconstructing the crash.

Dye released no information on the injuries.

The crash site was north of Edwardsville near the Holiday Shores community.

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