LEAWOOD, Kan. (WDAF) — New video released Thursday captures the eight-mile-long ride one driver took underneath a semi on a Kansas City interstate.
The video is from early Wednesday morning when a driver slid under a semi and then was struck underneath it for several miles along Interstate 435.
Getting someone out of a car that’s stuck underneath a semi-truck’s trailer is not all that unusual. Firefighters say it happens more than you’d think.
When rescue crews saw the Kia compact car wedged underneath the trailer of a big semi-truck Wednesday morning, they knew right away this was no ordinary crash.
“It was a little hard to put together what had gone on,” said Olathe Fire Department Battalion Chief Sean Brooks. “We knew something just wasn’t quite adding up. But again, she had been through such a traumatic event up until that point in time. She wasn’t exactly able to tell us until we were able to get her out what had occurred.”
The 28-year-old Kansas City woman told Brooks she had crashed into the truck’s trailer and gotten stuck underneath it at I-435 and State Line Road, nearly 8 miles away from where rescue crews now were using special gear to cut away the door to her car and get her out.
Radio transmission recorded by Broadcastify brought rescue crews with special extrication tools to the scene after other drivers called 911 to alert police to the car being dragged down the highway just after 3:30 a.m. Wednesday.
Brooks says firefighters’ sole focus was to free a trapped woman, even though they didn’t really understand how she had gotten there.
“The amount of snowpack that was up inside the vehicle from where the windows had blown out from her traveling 8 miles down the road and her being as cold as she was, all of these things, we were able to figure out afterwards,” he said.
Brooks calls it remarkable that no one was seriously hurt, especially because the car’s roofline had partially collapsed, and the vehicle could’ve broken free from the trailer while being dragged at highway speeds.
Firefighters say they’re not surprised that the truck driver never recognized he had been in a crash because slippery conditions on the pavement that morning dramatically reduced the amount of friction dragging a car ordinarily would generate.