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1 killed, 3 injured in I-40 West crashes | News

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1 killed, 3 injured in I-40 West crashes
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Two separate crashes happened within minutes of one another on I-40 West at Lovell Road early Thursday morning, killing one person and hurting three others.

The first crash happened just after 3:50 a.m. A car crashed into the back of a tractor trailer.

Officials said the car's driver, 34-year-old Richard Sampley of Heiskell, was hurt and charges are pending. Crews took Sampley to the University of Tennessee Medical Center. No word on his condition at this time. The tractor trailer's driver wasn't injured.

A truck driver of 15 years, Sydney Hurst, got to the crash before the emergency crews arrived.

"When I got up here, there was nothing but smoke, havoc," Hurst said, "One car ran into the back of the flatbed and the guy was entrapped. The car was smoking so I used my fire extinguisher and sprayed all around it."

The second crash happened about 7 minutes after the first crash. When an SUV slowed down because of traffic, a car struck it from behind, causing the SUV to veer off the road.

The car's driver, 40-year-old Ernesto J. Carricaburu of Knoxville, died. The Tennessee Highway Patrol crash report said Carricaburu wasn't wearing a seat belt.

The passenger in the car, 27-year-old Pierce Hartley, was also injured. Crews took Hartley to UT Medical Center. Doctors have since released him.

The SUV's driver, 62-year-old Mark G. Northern, was also hurt and transported to UT Medical Center. Right now, there's no word on his condition.

The two crashes shut down the interstate's westbound lanes from about 4 a.m. until 7 a.m. After 7 a.m., troopers reopened a few lanes at a time to let traffic through. By 9:30 a.m., crews reopened all lanes.

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