Troopers with the Department of Public Safety are at the scene of a fatal crash involving an 18-wheeler in Gregg County.
According to the Gregg County Sheriff's Office, the wreck is near the intersection of Hwy 31 and Hwy 259.
Troopers on scene said the 18-wheeler left the roadway and crashed into the woods. The trees ripped the side of the semi's cab away, authorities said, which ejected a passenger who was sitting in the cab at the time; they were pronounced dead at the scene. The driver was taken to the hospital; his condition is unknown.
Wrecker services face challenges every day and often find themselves teamed up with a hazmat crew in the aftermath of a wreck. Jerry's Wrecker Services out of Henderson had to pull the crashed 18-wheeler out of the woods Wednesday. The rig had half of its wheels off of the ground and was sitting at an angle due to the way it was positioned. Crews used heavy equipment to move trees to get the rig back on its wheels so they could tow it away and open the ramp to traffic.
"It's always different. I mean you never have a common one," said Kolton Wallace, co-owner of Jerry's Wrecker Services. "They never happen the same way. They are always a different challenge."
Work crews had to transfer the semi's load of solar panels to another trailer before the truck could be towed away.
It's unclear what caused the 18-wheeler to crash. Gregg County deputies assisted DPS at the scene.
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