LEAWOOD, Kan. — A semi driver told police he felt his vehicle felt “sluggish.” That’s because he’d been dragging a car that crashed into him for eight miles.
It started early morning Wednesday at State Line Road and the stoplight for the on ramp to Interstate 435 westbound.
Samarth Thakur had been salting parking lots as the snow fell and was sitting at the light before 4 a.m.
Video captured on a fellow salt truck driver’s phone shows a semi going on a green light through the intersection and a Kia Forte smashing into the semi’s trailer in front of the passenger side’s rear wheels.
“She was probably going 30-40 miles per hour and the next thing you know that car is just wedged underneath there,” Thakur said.
Thakur expected the semi driver to get out and see if the other driver was OK, but that didn’t happen.
“We heard a huge boom there was a loud bang and I thought he would have felt that or stopped but he did not stop at all and just kept going,” Thakur said.
Video showed what happened next as the semi got on I-435 Westbound dragging the car alongside it, the red tail lights visible on its right side.
By the time the semi made its way to Metcalf Avenue you can see a salt truck with flashing white light following behind and another alongside the semi driver.
“We were honking, I didn’t try to get in front, but my buddy did. We tried to roll our windows down slow him down and he was not getting our attention at all,” Thakur said.
Thakur said he could see the helpless woman moving inside and feared for the worst.
“If she got unstuck from that spot she was she could have gotten run over by those rear wheels that car would’ve gotten smashed I think,” he said.
After eight miles Overland Park Police finally stopped the truck at Lackman Road. They found a 28 year old Kansas City woman stuck underneath with the roofline partially collapsed.
“Fire in route to extract the female party has informed she can’t move or get out,” a Broadcastify recording of 911 dispatchers indicated.
According to the police report, she told police she’d left a bar and had been drinking but believed she was able to safely drive.
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The 70-year-old semi driver said he thought he hit a curb and his vehicle felt “sluggish” afterward.
Police say the crash remains under investigation.