Sam Houston Tollway reopens after fiery fatal wreck

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by khou.com staff

khou.com

Posted on October 14, 2011 at 9:04 AM

Updated Saturday, Oct 15 at 1:49 PM

HOUSTON— The westbound lanes of the North Sam Houston Tollway reopened at the North Sam Plaza Friday evening, several hours after a fiery crash killed two people.

Five lanes had been shut down since the accident happened just after 2 a.m.

Authorities said the driver of a Ford Expedition was paying a toll when a big rig came up from behind, hit a concrete barrier, went airborne and crashed into the Toll Plaza.

The 18-wheeler, driven by 45-year-old Michael Winfield, then landed on top of the Expedition and burst into flames, trapping the SUV driver inside.

Winfield and the SUV driver were both killed.

No one was inside the toll booth and there were no other injuries.

Investigators don't know why Winfield lost control, but routine toxicology tests will be performed. They say it's possible he fell asleep or suffered a medical problem.

Cameras on the toll plazas didn't record the crash.  

The big rig is owned by Penske Truck Company and may be local.

 

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