Semi driver killed in southwestern Minnesota crash

  • Article by: Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 9, 2012 - 8:58 PM

A truck driver from St. James, Minn., died Thursday in a highway crash in southwestern Minnesota that involved two vehicles carrying the same agricultural chemical, authorities said Friday.

The collision about 1 p.m. Thursday on Hwy. 86 about 2 miles north of Lakefield involved a semitrailer tractor and a farm tractor, both of them hauling anhydrous ammonia, according to the State Patrol.

Hwy. 86 was closed for more than a day as workers removed from a ditch the tipped-over semi, which leaked some of the widely used fertilizer. It reopened Friday evening. No one was evacuated.

Killed was Joseph M. Oliver, 44, the patrol said. Oliver's semi went into the ditch, trapping him in his cab.

The tractor's driver, Jeffrey M. Lange, 48, of Windom, Minn., was not hurt.

Lange's tractor was pulling an anhydrous ammonia applicator and an anhydrous tank. The semi's tank was full of the same chemical, the patrol said.

PAUL WALSH

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