Name of I-44 Fatality Revealed, Other Driver Charged with DWI
UPDATED: Interstate 44 westbound still isn't completely re-opened since today's early morning accident near Eureka, however one lane is semi-open, according to authorities. One driver since was arrested on the charge of Driving While Intoxicated.
Missouri State Highway Patrol Sgt. Al Nothum tells Eureka-Wildwood Patch that two crashes actually occurred this morning on westbound Interstate 44 just west of Eureka.
The driver of the disabled car referenced in earlier reports ran into the I-44 guard rail on the righthand side while heading westbound on I-44, Nothum said, which caused his vehicle to spin out and eventually stop on the interstate. The driver left the car.
Nothum said several drivers coming behind the car nearly hit it, but managed to swerve and miss it, after which they pulled off to the side of the roadway. The driver of a "box truck" referenced earlier today was one of the individuals who swerved and missed the vehicle. That driver pulled over and was going back to the car to try to offer assistance, when the driver of a tractor trailer rig ran into the car from behind, Nothum said.
The truck driver who died was Joshua W. Sanders, a resident of Rolla, MO. He was 34 years old. He drove for Conway Trucking. His name is being released this afternoon because his relatives have been notified.
A full Highway Patrol accounting will be forthcoming.
Nothum said the charges for the Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) arrest will be handled by the St. Louis County Prosecutors' Office.
Updated at 5:20 p.m.: The driver of the car in this accident was Matthew Snyders, a 44-year-old St. Louis resident, according to a Missouri State Highway Patrol report. He was taken by a Eureka Fire Protection District crew to Mercy Hospital.
Snyders was driving a 2007 Saturn Ion, which was towed from the scene by Eureka-based Hyndrich Brothers Towing.
Authorities now indicate the first crash against the guard rail occurred closer to 4:55 a.m., and that Sanders hit the vacated car around 5 a.m.
Snyders was wearing a safety belt, while Sanders was not, according to the report.