Photo by Jamie Germano, Rochester Democrat & Chronicle
ROCHESTER, NY-- One person was killed and a second was seriously injured in a crash that mangled two trucks on Route 590 in Brighton Monday afternoon and snarled traffic for hours across the east side of Rochester and Brighton.
New York State Police have confirmed that Shawn Wetmore, 40, of Batavia, was killed. The driver of a tanker, Daniel Baker, 25, of Wyoming, suffered serious injuries and was taken to Strong Memorial Hospital for treatment.
PHOTO GALLERY: Deadly Tanker Truck Accident (http://on.rocne.ws/1aT8T5j)
The crash occurred just after 1 p.m. involving the tanker truck, which was hauling animal waste, and a smaller box truck, driven by Wetmore.
State police are investigating what led to the crash and the sequence of events.
Though it was initially reported that one of the two involved trucks fell from an Interstate 490 ramp, Brighton Fire Chief Stephen MacAdam said he could not confirm whether either truck tumbled onto Route 590 from another road.
"I don't know yet what caused this accident, but to have two vehicles hit this way is really a freak accident," MacAdam said.
The tractor-trailer driver was reportedly thrown from the rig, which landed upside down on the northbound lanes of Route 590. Rural Metro spokesperson LaShay Harris said it appeared that several bystanders pulled the driver away from the truck.
The smaller truck came to rest partly in the grassy median with the rear of the truck in the air. Harris said the driver, Wetmore, died at the scene.
Both involved trucks were "very mangled," MacAdam said.
The contents of the tanker and diesel fuel also spilled onto the highway, he said. The debris field spanned about 1,000 feet and covered the highway's northbound lanes.
"The initial concern was ... fire, which was quickly extinguished, and then the other concern is that we did not know what the other product was and we were looking for placards and shipping information," he said. "It is animal waste so the (Department of Environmental Conservation) sampled air quality and there is no danger to health or environment."
The crash closed part of Route 590, in both directions, near Blossom Road, according to the New York state Department of Transportation. The highway remained closed until well after the evening commute.
Interstate 490 remained open, but traffic was moving slowly throughout the afternoon, and side streets in the area were backed up during the evening commute.
State Police, Monroe County deputies and firefighters from numerous area departments were at the scene.
"This is a pretty substantial incident with substantial injuries to both victims," said Jonathan Smith, chief of the Brighton Ambulance Service. "There were multiple people on the scene, both fire and police, and also civilians on the scene, so it is very likely there was some civilian assistance."
Rochester Democrat & Chronicle