Truck driver describes crashing into low boom on Claiborne bridg - FOX 8, WVUE,, weather, app, news, saints

Truck driver describes crashing into low boom on Claiborne bridge

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The DOTD said it would take at least six hours to repair the Claiborne Bridge after an 18-wheeler crashed into it.

In an exclusive interview, the driver of the truck told FOX 8 what part of the bridge he believed was malfunctioning.

"The truck the cab is all messed up. The top part of the sleeper and stuff. Got a big hole up in there," said Joseph Clinton. "I was coming up the Claiborne Bridge, and when I got to that thing, all I did was heard something on the truck, and I looked up and I stopped. I did stop the truck, I looked up, and it was all tore up," 

Clinton said the drive was his usual route. He transports loads of shrimp from the Lafitte's Frozen Foods facility in Violet to the company's cold storage area in St. Rose.

"I've been driving every day, going across this bridge every day coming out of Violet," Clinton said.

"Daily, some times multiple times a day," added James Butler, the vice president of Lafitte's Frozen Foods.

Butler answered the call about the accident.

"You get a call like that, you want to make sure first that everybody is OK, and I was glad to hear that Joe was," Butler said.

"I just feel it a little where the seat belt pulled on my shoulder, that's all," Clinton said.

A spokesperson for the DOTD said emergency contractors were called to clear the scene of debris and investigate. Butler said it was clear to him that the crash wasn't Clinton's fault because he hit the beam on the east side, but drove right under the one on the west side.

"It seems like one of the booms that was in place usually to stop traffic from going onto the bridge while it's up or down was a little lower than normal, whether it slipped down or wasn't properly put all the way back up," Butler said.

"I hit the beam. The beam was too low, but the other one wasn't. One of them was low and one of them wasn't," Clinton said.

Butler and coworkers got Clinton to safety by strapping the broken cab into place in order to get it to Penske for repairs.

A DOTD spokesperson said they would not provide a comment in response to the possible low boom..

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