Mail truck wrecks, blocks I-65

Published 7:58 pm Thursday, June 4, 2009

A U.S. Postal Service truck wrecked on Interstate 65 in north Chilton County early Thursday morning, scattering mail all over the road and blocking the southbound lane for at least two hours.

The 18-wheeler was reportedly heading northbound when the driver lost control, causing the truck to turn on its side, cross the median and slide into a guard rail near the 224-mile marker.

Union Grove Fire Department was dispatched at 2:25 a.m., and Jemison provided mutual aid on the scene. The driver had to be extricated from the vehicle.

“We had to cut one end of the guardrail off completely before we could get to the cab to start cutting on it,” Union Grove Chief Robin Ellison said.

The driver was transported to UAB and released later Thursday, suffering only minor injuries. The interstate did not re-open until after 4 a.m., however.

“He had boxes of mail, and it was strewn all over the interstate,” Stetson Gray of Union Grove said.

The truck was traveling from Montgomery en route to Memphis, according to U.S. Postal Service spokesman Joseph Breckenridge. All the mail was destined for Colorado and other areas in the western U.S.

“No local mail has been affected,” Breckenridge said. “No mail was destroyed.”

Some of the mail became wet from the rain, he added, but the postal service was able to dry it out. Any mail delays caused by the wreck should not be longer than one day, Breckenridge indicated.

The exact cause of the wreck was not known.