A Bayard man was hospitalized following a fatal four-vehicle crash Monday afternoon on Wyoming State Highway 230 near Laramie.
According to a release from the Wyoming Highway Patrol, troopers were called to the scene about 19 miles south of Laramie, finding one person dead and three injured, including 54-year-old William H. Bennett.
Investigators say around milepost 19 on Wyoming 230, a Ford Superduty pickup was stopped and waiting for oncoming traffic to clear to make a left turn onto Tumbleweed Lane. Also traveling eastbound was a 2000 Peterbilt tractor-trailer combination driven by Bennett that was being followed by a 2012 GMC pickup; both of these vehicles were coming up behind the stopped Ford pickup. A 2015 Peterbilt tractor-trailer combination was westbound when the GMC pickup pulled out to pass the 2000 Peterbilt. The GMC pickup completed the pass, and the driver of the GMC pickup did not notice that the Ford pickup was stopped, waiting to make a left turn. The GMC pickup collided with the rear of the Ford pickup. The collision pushed the Ford pickup into the westbound lane of travel into the path of the 2015 Peterbilt which resulted in a head-on collision. This collision caused the 2015 Peterbilt to lose control and enter the eastbound lane of travel colliding head-on with the 2000 Peterbilt. After this collision occurred, the 2015 Peterbilt tripped and rolled one time.
Bennett was wearing his seatbelt and transported to the Ivinson Memorial Hospital for injuries sustained in the crash. His condition was unavailable Tuesday evening, as staff told KNEB News he had been transferred out to another medical facility.
The driver of the Ford, identified as 65-year-old Laramie, Wyoming resident Steve H. Bottger, was not wearing his seatbelt and transported to Ivinson Memorial Hospital for injuries sustained in the crash.
The driver of the GMC has been identified as 37-year-old Laramie, Wyoming resident Brandon M. Chimenti. Chimenti was wearing his seatbelt and transported to the Ivinson Memorial Hospital for injuries sustained in the crash.
The driver of the 2015 Peterbilt, 52-year-old Annebella, Utah resident Matthew R. Anderson. Anderson succumbed to his injuries at the scene of the crash. It was unknown if Anderson was wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash.
Driver inattention, unsafe passing, and speed on the part of Chimenti are being investigated as possible contributing factors.
This is the 123rd fatality on Wyoming’s roadways in 2019 compared to 86 in 2018, 109 in 2017, and 91 in 2016 to date.
Editor’s Note: Following an update by the WHP, this version corrects the semi-trucks driven by Bennett and Anderson.