A pickup truck struck a firetruck early Thursday morning on Interstate 70 in St. Peters. The driver of the pickup truck was killed in the collision and one firefighter was injured in the accident.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that at 12:18 a.m. O'Fallon resident Chad Zaiz swerved to avoid a police vehicle and ran into the back of the CCFR truck. The incident occurred on Interstate 70 near the Spencer Road overpass in St. Peters.
The fire truck was on the scene responded to an earlier call relating to an EMS emergency
“In addition to assisting with the medical emergency, our firefighters were there to ensure the safety of those involved in the situation,” CCFR Chief Russ Mason said in a release from the department. “The truck was strategically placed on the highway with its lights on to warn drivers of the situation, and to provide a safe zone for police, paramedics and other emergency responders to take care of accident victims.”
According to CCFR, the exact speed of the pick-up truck is still being investigated, the impact of the collision was forceful enough to lift and move the 78,000 pound fire truck.
The Missouri Highway Patrol identified the driver as Chad E. Zaiz, 30, of O'Fallon, MO. Zaiz died at the scene and an autopsy and toxicology tests are pending.
The incident closed three lanes of westbound I-70 for nearly five hours during the investigation. By 5 a.m. all lane were open.
Five firefighter were on the truck when the collision occurred. Two firefighters sustained minor injuries in the crash, but are expected to fully recover. The fire truck (CCFR ladder truck 9542) was severely damaged and will be out of service for an extended length of time.
The Missouri Highway Patrol is conducting the full investigation of the crash.