Cedar Rapids Weather
One Person Injured in I-380 Crash Near Gilbertville
KCRG/Gazette/Courier Staff Reports
GILBERTVILLE, Iowa - A Fort Dodge man was flown to a Waterloo hospital after his pickup truck struck a semi head-on and caught fire Monday.
The crash happened in the construction zone on Highway 20/Interstate 380 near mile marker 66, and passersby and road crews in the area fought back the flames until firefighters and paramedics arrived.
At the time of the crash, the eastbound roadway was under construction, and traffic for both directions was routed onto the westbound portion of the road. The travel lanes were separated by vertical markers.
According to the Iowa State Patrol, Daniel Flippo, 32, was heading east shortly after noon when he drifted to the right and then over-corrected and headed into oncoming traffic. He collided with a westbound livestock semi driven by Jonathon Link, 25, of Sherrill.
"I seen him come across the yellow markers, and I saw a cloud of dust," said Robert Clayton of Independence, who was also heading west.
A 40-foot-long wall of flames erupted behind the crash, and the pickup began smoking, said Rob Edwards of Nevada, who was working on the road project with Iowa Plains Signing Inc.
Edwards rushed over, as did Link and several others. The road workers emptied their portable fire extinguishers, and truckers who stopped began assisting with theirs, witnesses said.
Inside, they could hear Flippo.
"He was screaming ‘get me out, get me out,’" Edwards said. "It was a good thing he had his seat belt on or he’d be dead."
An Aircare helicopter flew Flippo to Covenant Medical Center in Waterloo for treatment.
Crews from Evansdale, Gilbertville and Jesup fire departments assisted at the scene with freeing Flippo, dousing the fire and spraying down hogs in the semi trailer to keep them from overheating.
Officers with the Black Hawk County Sheriff’s Office, Iowa Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Enforcement and Transportation Maintenance also assisted.
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