The driver of a truck hauling chicken manure was trapped for more than 90 minutes after a crash with a minivan which severely damaged a Gray Highway bridge in Jones County.
At about 11 a.m., the tractor trailer was headed south in the inside lane near Sand Creek when a Honda Odyssey in the right lane changed lanes apparently to make a U-turn, Jones County sheriff’s Deputy Robert Land said.
The van hit the truck which overturned and spilled its load as both vehicles slammed into the bridge.
“The truck actually went through the concrete, ... and the vehicle actually caromed off the bridge and came to rest in the middle of the roadway” Land said. “Part of the bridge is actually in the creek and the Georgia Department of Transportation will have to determine if the bridge is in fact safe to continue to use right now.”
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Paramedics took three people who were in the Odyssey to the Medical Center, Navicent Health, in Macon. All are expected to survive their injuries, Land said.
Rescuers had to cut the truck driver from the mangled cab of the big rig which was partially hanging off the side of the bridge.
A round of cheers went up from the crowd of passersby when the man was wheeled on the stretcher to a waiting ambulance.
Manure covered the highway as the wrecker crew began hoisting truck parts up from the creek bed.
An environmental officer from Jones County said there did not initially appear to be much hazardous material in the water.
GDOT crews, Georgia State Patrol troopers and the wrecker crews remained on site long after the injured were taken to the hospital.
Southbound motorists are urged to use Greene Settlement Road or Ga. 18 to detour around the crash site which could be blocked for weeks while the bridge is repaired.