OHP Releases Deadly Will Rogers Turnpike Crash Report


Monday, August 3rd 2009, 1:15 pm
By: News On 6


By Emory Bryan, The News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK -- The Oklahoma Highway Patrol has released its report on a crash on the Will Rogers Turnpike in late June which killed 10 people.  The accident happened near the Miami exit at 1:16 p.m. Friday, June 26th.

According to the OHP report, the driver of the semi truck that caused the crash did not realize he'd been in a wreck.

READ THE OHP REPORT

The report says driver Donald Creed didn't brake before his truck plowed into six other vehicles which had slowed because of a separate accident.

While still sitting in his semi truck, Creed asked a trooper if Creed had hit someone.  The report says that later, while Creed was still at the scene, he said the other vehicles "had driven underneath him while he was parked."

A witness quoted in the report said he was also driving a truck eastbound on I-44 when he crested a hill and saw brake lights on the cars ahead of him all the way to the underpass.

He said he began to slow his truck down when he saw Creed's truck strike a car.  The witness said he never saw brake lights on Creed's truck. 

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol says Creed's truck traveled for 395 feet after the initial impact, leaving skid, scuff and gouge marks.

The trooper who wrote the report stated that Creed's company GPS system indicated his truck had been traveling from 69.5 to 71 miles per hour for approximately 4.5 minutes prior to the first collision.

The OHP says that strongly indicates the truck was on cruise control at the time of the crash.

According to the report, Creed was able to walk and negotiate turns even though he'd been injured in the crash and gave no indication of any visual problem.

Several witnesses told the Oklahoma Highway Patrol the truck didn't slow down at all.

"That's a big indicator of inattention, when someone doesn't taps a brake, in this case when there were no skid marks left, it tells us there was no braking that the drivers attention was devoted elsewhere," said Oklahoma Highway Patrol Trooper George Brown.

The report says troopers were unable to determine his physical condition prior to the collision because Creed declined to be interviewed on the advice of his attorney. 

While the report places blame on the driver, no charges have been filed yet, while the case is under review by the Ottawa County District Attorney. 

A separate investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board is continuing. 

7/10/2009 Related story: Recovery Difficult For Some Turnpike Crash Survivors