Texas Highway 61 in Coquihala, Texas, closed for several hours Wednesday, causing traffic to be diverted around the scene and shutting down major roads in the area.
The area was reopened just before 9 a.m.
“We’re all pretty much out of our cars,” said resident Mark Smith, who drove from Texas to Coquahala, where he was visiting friends.
“We’re just hanging out in the car.”
As the highway was closed, Smith said he drove by the scene where a pickup truck hit a concrete barrier at the intersection of Interstate 35 and CoquiHalla Highway, a major highway in the Coquivoula area of southwest Texas.
“I looked at the road and it was completely covered in a lot of debris,” Smith said.
“The truck hit the concrete and then it just went over the barrier.”
He added, “It’s like it was hitting the highway in front of us, just completely destroyed.”
Smith said that after he got home, he got an email from a friend saying, “That’s the only way I know it can be, that the highway is completely blocked off.
That’s why we are here.”
Coquihla Highway is the main thoroughfare between Coquiat and McAllen, Texas.
Smith said the crash was one of the worst he has ever witnessed.
“You’re trying to get to work and there’s a big truck behind you,” he said.
“The driver had no time to think.
He didn’t react.”
Coast Guard spokesman Captain Jeff Lopre said that when the crash occurred, the crew had to get the driver out of the vehicle and safely onto the highway.
“When the vehicle came to a full stop and the vehicle was almost completely engulfed, the Coast Guard crew quickly took the driver into custody,” Lopres said in a statement.
“They used their airbags to get him out of his vehicle.
The driver was taken to a local hospital, and was listed in good condition.”
The Coast Guard was called to the scene shortly before 9:30 a.mi.
CT, and the driver was pronounced dead at the scene.
Loprebates said the driver of the truck was treated and released.
Coqui Halla Highway is about two hours south of the Coquinas.
A witness told ABC News that she saw the crash in the distance and saw the driver get out of a pickup and run into a ditch.
She said the trucker then drove off in a white Ford Focus.
The highway reopened around 9:45 a.ms.
CT after a few hours of traffic closure, with the highway reopening to traffic at 8 a.mt.
CT on Thursday.