St. Martin

May 5, 2014 4:38 PM by Letitia Walker

State officials to re-examine interstate following fatal accident Thursday

State officials will re-examine I-10 on Thursday after an accident involving four 18-wheelers shut down the interstate Friday.
According to DOTD, they inspected the roadway immediately to make sure it was safe to re-open. Their next step is to figure out what equipment will be needed to make repairs.
Friday, the interstate was shut down after a fiery crash claimed the lives of an Ohio couple. The roadway did not open again until Saturday.
Troopers say their preliminary investigation revealed that a 2007 International 18 wheeler, operated by Ricky Chester of Ohio, a 2014 Freightliner, operated by Darren Robinson of Baton Rouge, a 2003 Freightliner, operated by Bernadin Rojas-Soriano of New Jersey, and a 2013 Kenworth, operated by Derrick Moss of Mississippi, were traveling eastbound on I-10 in the right lane of the Atchafalaya Basin Bridge near mile marker 127. Chester, for reasons under investigation, failed to stop with traffic congestion and the front of the International struck the rear of Robinson's Freightliner pushing it forward into the rear of Rojas-Soriano's Freightliner which was also pushed forward into the rear of the Kenworth.
During the crash Robinson's Freightliner's trailer dislodged, traveled over the guardrail, and fell to the ground below. The other 18-wheelers came to rest in the roadway completely blocking I-10 eastbound. As a result of the crash, the International and Rojas-Soriano's trailer caught on fire and quickly became fully engulfed in flames sending smoke billowing over both directions of I-10.
Ricky Chester and his passenger, wife Karen Chester, were pronounced dead on the scene by the Iberville Parish Coroner's office. Due to the extent of the fire, restraint use by the Chesters is unknown at this time and toxicology analysis is pending an autopsy. Robinson received minor injuries. Bernadin Rojas-Soriano and Moss were not injured. Robinson, Bernadin-Soriano, and Moss were restrained and all voluntarily submitted to a breath alcohol test with no detectable alcohol found in their systems.


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