Just before 5 p.m., troopers from the Nevada Highway Patrol were dispatched to a motor vehicle collision on Interstate 80 near mile marker 51. The preliminary accident investigation indicates that a silver Chevrolet pickup that was towing a small trailer hauling a fishing boat was traveling east on the freeway in the right hand travel lane. The elderly driver of the pickup, an 82-year-old man from Montana, tried to turn left into the center median area. Also traveling eastbound in the left-hand travel lane near that location was an 18-wheeled commercial truck and trailer transporting food products.
According to NHP, the elderly driver might have attempted to make a u-turn through the center dirt median area and failed to see the approaching eastbound big rig from behind. The driver of the big rig applied the brakes and attempted to steer toward the median in an effort to avoid a collision with the errant pickup driver. The front of the commercial truck struck the left side of the pickup in the roadway near the left travel lane and inside the paved shoulder, which caused the pickup to roll over and separate from the boat trailer.
The elderly male was pronounced dead at the scene while the big rig driver stopped his commercial motor vehicle in the center dirt median area after the collision and was not injured.
The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office and the Washoe County Medical Examiner’s Office are still attempting to properly identify the victim and notify his family. Once that notification has been made his name will be released.
The accident is being investigated by Trooper Robert Haigney of the Major Accident Investigation Team. Witnesses, or anyone with additional information, are encouraged to call him at 775-689-4682 regarding case no. NHP-1104191337.