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Driver escapes inferno
by Kenda Nelson
Aug 07, 2012 | 3420 views | 0 0 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Roywell sand truck plunged over the bridge and caught fire.
The Roywell sand truck plunged over the bridge and caught fire.
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REFUGIO ­— The driver of a sand truck escaped with his life Monday morning after the 18-wheeler he was driving veered into the wrong lane of traffic, crashed through the guard rail of a bridge and plunged over the side then burst into flames.

Adolfo Garza of Corpus Christi was taken to a Corpus Christi trauma center by ambulance suffering from severe burns to his face and hands.

The accident occurred Monday morning just after 8 a.m. on State Highway 202 on a bridge just east of the Blanco Creek Bridge. The 18-wheeler belonged to Roywell Services in Refugio.

Garza was traveling west on 202 when he crossed into the eastbound lane. He knocked out the guard rails leading to the bridge, then the vehicle straddled the concrete barrier before plummeting over the edge and bursting into flames, according to Charlie Ramirez, TxDOT public information officer in Corpus Christi.

A survey crew working nearby saw the flames and smoke and called 911, Ramirez said.

“They saw the driver climbing out of the cab,” Ramirez said.

The truck was engulfed in flames and debris was scattered across the highway.

Sgt. Rick Adame with the Refugio Sheriff’s Department was the first responder on the scene.

“He’s very lucky to be alive,” Adame said.

The highway was closed to traffic from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. after the debris was cleared from the roadway. TxDOT crews under Abel Solis in Refugio worked Tuesday restoring temporary guard rails.

“Workers with the bridge division will come in and repair the bridge permanently,” said Aaron Ames, TxDOT public information officer.

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