NEW HAVEN – The driver of a tractor-trailer rig failed to stop on U.S. 30 Tuesday, rear-ending two vehicles, killing both drivers and causing a six-vehicle wreck, police said Wednesday.
Suzanne K. Stephenson, 65, of Monroeville and Sandra Dealey, 43, of Convoy, Ohio, were killed in the crash on New Haven's east side.
A total of seven people were hospitalized. Two of those people were in serious condition, but their names have not been released.
Scott Adam, a New Haven police spokesman, said all traffic involved in the crash was westbound on U.S. 30 near Doyle Road about 10:48 a.m. Tuesday.
"The light turned green and traffic started to move," Adam said.
But a tractor-trailer rig coming in behind the line of vehicles failed to stop or slow down and hit at least two of the vehicles, causing a chain reaction, he said.
"He hit one of them out of the way and then hit the one that caught fire and then proceeded sideways," Adam said.
The name of the rig driver has not been released as the crash remains under investigation.
By the time the three cars, two sport utility vehicles and the rig came to a stop, vehicles were spread all over the roadway.
Wednesday afternoon, all that remained at the scene of the crash were tire tracks and bits and pieces of debris. Westbound U.S. 30 was closed at Webster Road for nearly eight hours Tuesday as crews worked to clear the road.
Both Stephenson and Dealey died of blunt force trauma. Both were driving alone and were wearing seatbelts at the time of the crash, the Allen County Coroner's Office said.
Stephenson and Dealey's deaths mark the first traffic fatalities in Allen County this year.