Crime

Sleepy driver nods off on Interstate 82. Next thing he knew, he was pinned inside truck

A truck driver was trapped in his truck after falling asleep behind the wheel and crashing Tuesday afternoon.
A truck driver was trapped in his truck after falling asleep behind the wheel and crashing Tuesday afternoon. Washington State Patrol

A sleepy driver was trapped inside his truck for about 10 minutes after he ran into a semi on Interstate 82.

Eduardo A Martinez, 28, of Burbank, was behind the wheel of a flatbed truck when he nodded off at 1:45 p.m. as he headed west on the interstate, Washington State Patrol Trooper Chris Thorson said. His truck slammed into the semi near Coffin Road about six miles south of Kennewick and crushed the cabin of his truck.

The crash left him pinned inside for about 15 minutes. Firefighters freed him and he was taken to Trios Southridge Hospital. Thorson said he was in pain but able to talk.

The semi driver, Angel L. Pagan, 61, of Kissimmee, Fla., was not injured.

State troopers closed one of the westbound lanes for about an hour while they investigated the wreck.

WSP cited Martinez for second-degree negligent driving.

Cameron Probert covers breaking news and education for the Tri-City Herald, where he tries to answer readers’ questions about why police officers and firefighters are in your neighborhood. He studied communications at Washington State University.

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