MOA ramp reopens after rental truck hits beam, kills driver

  • Article by: KELLY SMITH , Star Tribune
  • Updated: August 4, 2012 - 5:20 PM

The Hennepin County medical examiner hasn't released the 52-year-old man's name. Two others were injured in the accident.

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Emergency workers surround a U-Haul trunk after a chunk of concrete in the MOA west parking ramp near Nordstrom broke loose and fell on it killing one person and injuring two others Friday, Aug. 3, 2012.

Photo: David Joles, Star Tribune

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A Mall of America parking ramp reopened Saturday, one day after a rental truck struck a concrete and steel support beam, which fell on the vehicle and killed the driver.

The 52-year-old man died at the scene. His passengers, a 45-year-old female and her 12-year-old daughter, were hospitalized with noncritical injuries. Their names have not been released.

Authorities wrapped up an investigation Saturday after the accident and said the ramp is structurally safe. The U-Haul truck was cleared from the scene, but the area where the accident occurred remained blocked off and will be closed the rest of the weekend, they said.

"I'm guessing it was a confused driver, but you can't be sure," Bloomington Police Deputy Chief Rick Hart said Saturday.

The U-Haul truck, which exceeded the ramp's 7-foot height limit, passed under a hanging device intended to alert drivers to the limit, but the truck driver may not have been aware of that, Hart said.

Around 8:30 p.m., the truck hit the first overhead span it came to on the north side of the West parking lot, just inside the entrance. The narrow rectangular span collapsed onto the truck, crushing the truck's cab.

No items were in the vehicle, Hart said, and he didn't know why the moving truck was there.

The man's identity has not yet been released by the Hennepin County medical examiner.

A mall spokeswoman said Saturday that it was the first such incident in the mall's 20 years.

Kelly Smith • 612-673-4141 • Twitter: @kellystrib

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