Local News

Police chase ends with crash on I-40

Posted February 3, 2010 8:08 a.m. EST
Updated February 3, 2010 6:45 p.m. EST

— A police chase ended Wednesday morning with the driver of a stolen pickup truck crashing on eastbound Interstate 40, which temporarily shut down several lanes near Jones Sausage Road near Garner.

The crash happened after a man stole a white Service Experts truck from an employee's home on the 1300 block of Pender Street in Raleigh just before 7 a.m., authorities said.

Knightdale police officers spotted the truck some time later at a Walmart in the town and started chasing the truck. A Wake County deputy joined the pursuit when the truck got onto Interstate 440.

The driver lost control on I-40, clipped a tractor-trailer, hit a ditch in the median, flipped and was ejected from the truck, authorities said.

"I looked in the mirrors and I saw the blue lights, and I felt a bump in the side of the trailer, and then I looked and saw the ladders (on the pickup) flying and the truck spinning around," said Steve Jewell, who was driving the tractor-trailer

Emergency crews took the driver of the Service Experts truck to WakeMed for treatment of what authorities initially described as critical injuries. His name and condition were not released.

Charges are pending, authorities said.

Rob Eichas with Service Experts said the company has a GPS tracking system in the truck that updates every two minutes. He was able to direct police to where the driver was headed.

"I just know that it was run off the road, and our GPS just displayed an end, meaning the vehicle stopped and that it was no longer running," Eichas said.

The man was able to steal the truck after the employee went outside, started the truck to get it warm and went back inside his house, Eichas said.