Wrong way on Vandiver interchange leads to Highway 63 accident

Friday, January 22, 2010 | 4:46 p.m. CST; updated 9:16 p.m. CST, Saturday, January 23, 2010
Kiffer Slate, left, and Travis Burton of Slate & Towing load Zane Hildreth's Pontiac Grand Prix onto their tow truck on Highway 63 near Vandiver Dr. in north Columbia on Friday. Gene Cunnigham, 82, drove the wrong way on Highway 63 with his Ford F-150 and collided with Hildreth.

COLUMBIA — Shortly before 11:30 a.m. Friday, a wrong turn at the interchange of Vandiver Drive and Highway 63 led to a collision. No one was injured.

Gene Cunningham, 82, was driving east on Vandiver Drive and took a wrong turn at the Highway 63 interchange, sending him down the northbound Highway 63 off-ramp and into oncoming Highway 63 traffic.

MU junior Zane Hildreth, who was driving in the right lane of northbound Highway 63, veered and braked to avoid Cunningham's vehicle, but the two collided.

Cunningham's Ford truck hit Hildreth's Grand Prix on the passenger-side door, blowing out Hildreth's windows and bending the frame of the car, according to Gene Williams, community service aide. The Grand Prix then spun, grazed a guard rail, and came to rest in a puddle of mud beneath the Vandiver Drive overpass.



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