A woman has died after a wrong-way crash involving a pick-up truck and a tractor-trailer on Interstate 291 east in Manchester overnight.
Firefighters were called to the highway just before exit 5 around 11:45 p.m. on Sunday after getting a report of crash involving a wrong-way driver and a tractor-trailer.
State police said 31-year-old Samantha Jo Smith, of Windsor Locks, was traveling the wrong way on I-291 west in the eastbound lanes when she struck a tractor-trailer head-on.
When crews arrived, they said they found a tractor-trailer blocking the highway with serious front-end damage and a severely damaged small pick-up truck nearby.
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According to investigators, Smith was found in the pick-up truck with serious injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene.
The driver of the tractor-trailer was able to get out of the vehicle before emergency crews arrived and suffered minor injuries. He was transported to Hartford Hospital to be evaluated.
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Authorities said there was a large amount of debris across the highway and there was also approximately 50 gallons of diesel leaking from the tractor-trailer.
The State Dept. of Energy and Environmental Protection and a hazmat team from Environmental Services, Inc. were called to assist with the leak. The clean-up company said the diesel fuel spill was covering all three lanes of the highway.
The eastbound side of the highway was closed at exit 4 while the State Police accident reconstruction team investigated the crash. State Dept. of Transportation officials said the left lane of the westbound side of the highway was also closed due to debris in the road. Both sides of the highway have since reopened.
The crash remains under investigation. Anyone who may have witnessed the crash is asked to contact Trooper Michael Dean #0416 at Troop H at (860) 534-1098 or through email at firstname.lastname@example.org.