Cable Barriers Didn’t Stop Dump Truck From Crossing Lanes

By Addison Speck, Reporter


By Belinda Yeung

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa- A dump truck crash south of Cedar Rapids shut down a portion of interstate 380 on Tuesday. The crash happened around 2:30 p.m. near the rest stop south of the Eastern Iowa airport exit. Authorities say a front tire blew out forcing the truck to veer off into a ditch, straight though the median cable barriers, and across 380.

Instead of the truck being stopped by cable barriers, it took the cable with it as it crossed into oncoming traffic. “It launched him up in the air, so he hit cable high and it wasn’t quiet able to hold him,” said Jim Porter, with the Cedar Rapids Fire Department.

The Department of Transportation tells us that the cables are tested using a straight truck. For example, a UPS delivery truck.The dump truck was empty at the time of the crash, but with it’s size and the angle it hit the cables it could have caused the cables to not do what they were supposed to. “Threw him through the median, cable slowed him down but it wasn’t able to stop him,” said Porter.

The cable wrapped around the truck, and stretched out across the interstate. But luckily, that cable didn’t break. “The cables initially are under about 5,000 pounds of pressure, if they snap it will be just like an accordion string. It will damage everything in it’s way,” said Porter. Since the barriers didn’t stop the truck from flying into oncoming traffic, it’s incredible that nobody was hurt. “With traffic this time of day, it was very lucky,” Porter said.

Fire officials tell us that dealing with accidents involving these cable barriers is still some what new to them. They have training in this area but not a lot.So on Tuesday, they brought in the D.O.T to help them deal with removing the truck without snapping the cables.
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