State Police Investigate Serious Crash on Route 95 Attleboro
Preliminary investigation by Trooper Nicholas Canavan indicates that the sequence of events that led to the crash began with a 1997 Volvo 960, driven by 21-year-old Andrew Tavarez of East Providence, R.I., traveling in the middle lane. The Volvo moved into the left lane, apparently in order to pass another car in front of it. When it did so, the Volvo lost control and struck a jersey barrier on the Reed Street overpass, and then swerved right across all traffic lanes, causing it to collide with the driver's side of a tractor trailer traveling in the right lane.
The tractor trailer, driven by 37-year-old Michael Cowan of Northbridge, Mass., lost control and rolled over to its left, its cab coming to rest on the Volvo's hood. The rolled-over truck blocked all four lanes, including the breakdown lane, and began to leak the fuel it was transporting. Cowan, Tavarez, and Tavarez's passenger, 19-year-old Hope Amaral of East Providence, R.I., were out of their vehicles when State Police arrived on scene. All were taken to Rhode Island Hospital with minor injuries.
Investigation revealed that the tractor trailer, which is owned by C. White Trucking of Connecticut, had left East Boston with 11,001 gallons of aviation fuel headed for T.F. Green Airport in Rhode Island. The fuel is volatile, but has a high ignition point. Under the direction of the Attleboro fire chief, who is the incident commander, foam was sprayed onto the truck and leaked fuel to reduce any chance of ignition. Environmental officials are assessing the impact of the leaked fuel into soil and drainage basins.
As of 3:30 p.m., all four lanes of the Route 295 South had been reopened. Residents from 14 homes that were evacuated as a precautionary measure have been allowed to return home.
This crash remains under investigation by the State Police Troop H, Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Section, Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Section, and Crime Scene Services Section to determine if charges are warranted. Other assisting agencies include the Attleboro Fire, Police and Health Departments, the Office of the State Fire Marshall, the federal Environmental Protection Agency, the state Department of Environmental Protection, Massachusetts Highway Department, the T.F. Green Airport Fire Department, the North Attleboro, Mass., and Pawtucket, R.I., police departments, and the Rhode Island State Police.
No further information is available at this time. Please do not call the barracks directly.