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VT firefighter jumps from I-91 overpass to avoid tractor trailer that hits fire truck. Molly Wood survives 40 foot drop.

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Jon Wolper, Valley News:

A Windsor firefighter who jumped off an Interstate 91 overpass to avoid an out-of-control tractor-trailer truck was recovering from injuries yesterday, officials said.

Molly Wood, a four-year member of the fire department, came away from the estimated 25- to 30-foot drop with a concussion, cuts and bruises and a likely broken ankle, Fire Chief Mark Kirko said.

“She’s very lucky that she actually survived the fall,” Kirko said, adding that Wood’s helmet and turnout gear likely provided protection as she hit the pavement.

Vermont Standard:

Wood and fellow Windsor firefighter Cory Austin were responding to two vehicles which crashed into the guardrail near mile marker 58 in Windsor due to icy conditions around 2:15 a.m. Shortly after, a tractor-trailer driven by Jan Fournier of Quebec lost control and slid toward Austin, Wood and one of the drivers. Austin and the driver headed north and jumped over the guardrail and onto the ground a short distance below. Wood had to jump onto County Road below to avoid being pinned between the tractor-trailer and the guardrail, Kirko said.

Later, two more tractor-trailers crashed into each other to avoid the accident.

Matt Ryan, Burlington Free Press:

The chain reaction began at about 2:15 a.m. when C.J. Stevens, 27, of Delhi, N.Y., crashed his 2003 Dodge Caravan into a guardrail while driving north on an icy stretch of interstate near the County Road overpass, according to state police.

As Douglas Bennett, 52, of Springfield approached the scene in his 1996 Honda Accord, the car spun out and also struck the guardrail, police stated.

Then a tractor trailer driven by Jan Fournier, 46, of Coaticook, Quebec plowed into Bennett’s car, pushing it into a Windsor fire truck. The 2003 International tractor itself then crashed into the same fire truck, injuring a firefighter trying to escape the wreck, according to police. 

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Comments - Add Yours

  • Fire21

    Prayers for her recovery.

    With all the inventions in electronics, I wonder how much effort is going into low-cost, variable message signs that could alert drivers to “Slow down, Accident ahead”. I know they have the portable signs, but more permanent-mounts are needed, especially on higher-speed roads. Of course, then you have to get drivers to pay attention to them…and to road conditions.

  • Anonymous

    I was on an incident a couple months ago where a driver crashed into one of those signs, which was put up to alert drivers to a serious accident about a quarter mile ahead, so….

  • Brian Haggerty

    Signs are useless. A sign will not install commonsense to idiot drivers. I sit in my fully marked Police cruiser and people do stupid things right in front of me. When I stop them, they say they saw the cruiser, just they don’t know why they did what they did. Then I watch them sit their with their mouth open ( I think this is a common practice of holding your mouth open trying to get more oxygen to their stupid little brains hoping it will increase thinking ability) yes, trying to come up with an answer. Epic fail. Then when on a call with Fire / EMS or just us, I watch repeatedly people racing towards the emergency vehicles with flashing lights. Signs don’t work. Lights don’t work. Even tickets with big fines don’t always work. BUT THEY MAKE ME FEEL BETTER GIVING THEM………… Best advice is park your rigs to give a barrier between yourself and the idiots. Activate all your warning lights. Wear all the reflective gear you can. And keep an eye looking over your shoulder. Prayer that the Fire Fighters heal quick and are back on their feet soon.