Updated: Rabbit Ears Pass closes due to semi rollover with driver injured
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — A man was extricated from a semi-truck with minor injuries after the vehicle was involved in a rollover crash at the bottom of the western side of Rabbit Ears Pass.
The single-vehicle crash closed Rabbit Ears Pass for a few hours on Tuesday afternoon.
At 1:04 p.m., first responders were called to mile marker 141 on U.S. Highway 40 to respond to a report of a tractor-trailer hauling a trailer of lumber rolled over on its roof. One occupant was trapped inside the vehicle, according to a news release from Steamboat Springs Fire Rescue.
Concerned that the occupant was critically injured, medics called for a Classic Air Medical air ambulance to remain on standby.
Once on scene, firefighters were able to speak to the driver, who had not sustained critical injuries, but they were unable to reach him due to damage to the vehicle. The driver was pinned between the dashboard and the steering column of the semi-truck. Knowing more about the man’s injuries, first responders called off the air ambulance.
Steamboat firefighters first stabilized the vehicle to prevent it from sliding, calling in heavy wrecker tow trucks from Rocky Mountain Towing to assist them.
They then worked to extricate the driver, removing and cutting multiple items from the vehicle. Medics were able to get to the man after cutting off the truck’s doors and steering column, removing both seats and lifting the dashboard off the man’s legs. He was extracted from the vehicle about an hour after firefighters were dispatched to the scene.
The driver was transported via ambulance to UCHealth Yampa Valley Medical Center in Steamboat, where he was treated for minor injuries.
Steamboat Springs Fire Rescue, the Routt County Sheriff’s Office and Colorado State Patrol responded to the scene.