COLUMBIA — A tractor-trailer ran into three sedans on northbound U.S. 63 south of Deer Park Wednesday, said Gary Gundy, a Missouri State Highway Patrol trooper.
Gale Blomenkamp, division chief of Boone County Fire Protection District, said seven people were involved in the accident “with varying degrees of injuries, some being minor and precautionary and major to some being a little more severe.”
He said all seven were being taken to University Hospital, including two children who had “nothing visible but … we want to get them to a hospital and get them checked out by a doctor."
“But nothing appears to be life-threatening at this point,” Blomenkamp said around 4:55 p.m. Wednesday.
Northbound U.S. 63 was closed after the accident, but the right lane of the northbound lanes opened up around 5:35 p.m.
Blomenkamp said that people were trapped in some of the vehicles and that it took around 15 to 20 minutes to extricate a woman from the vehicle with the worst damage.
Gundy said the tractor-trailer was driving northbound in the left lane, and traffic had slowed because of an accident closer to Deer Park. He said cars were trying to merge into the right lane when the tractor-trailer driver noticed traffic had slowed. She swerved, striking three cars.
Gundy said the tractor-trailer driver told him she did not notice everyone stopping. He said this is under investigation.
The initial accident, in which Gundy said he thought a car hit a deer and no people were injured, occurred about a half-mile north of this accident.
The four-vehicle accident occurred in the jurisdiction of Southern Boone County Fire Protection District, but its proximity to Boone County Fire Protection District's jurisdiction made it a dual-response area, Blomenkamp said. Each district sent three units to the scene, and a total of four ambulances came from University and Boone hospitals.