North Little Rock emergency units, along with Oak Grove Fire Department, Maumelle Fire, Arkansas State Police, MEMS, Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office, Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department and Pulaski County Office of Emergency Management on March 7 at 12:32 p.m., responded to an 18-wheeler accident on I-40 westbound near the Crystal Hill exit. Units found a tractor trailer badly damaged and on fire under the Young Road overpass.
Drivers travelling on I-40 were observed assisting the badly injured driver out of the truck. Emergency units provided first aid to the victim and prepped him for Med-Flight. Arkansas State Police later said the truck driver died from his injuries.
The truck was transporting rolls of plastic wrap. Much of the plastic melted during the fire. Operations were initiated to contain any run off from the tractor trailer. Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department personnel arrived on scene to restore the roadway and assess damage to the overpass.
“The North Little Rock Fire Department would like to thank all of the agencies involved in this incident,” aid North Little Rock Fire Department Captain John Pflasterer. “This incident demonstrates the inter-operability of our agencies and teamwork involved to mitigate large scale incidents like this one.”
Pflasterer said motorists behind the tractor trailer truck got out of their vehicles and removed him from the burning vehicle.But the truck driver died anyway becuase he had burns on upwards of 70 percent of his body, Pflasterer said.
Bill Sadler, public information officer for the Arkansas State Police, said his agency has not yet released the name of the truck driver.