WEST YELLOWSTONE, Mont. — Thirteen bison were killed or had to be euthanized after their herd was struck by a semi-truck involved in an accident with two other vehicles on a dark Montana highway just outside Yellowstone National Park, authorities said Friday.
The semi-truck struck the bison after dark on Wednesday night. Some bison were killed in the crash, and others were put down due to the severity of their injuries, the West Yellowstone Police Department said in a statement.
No one in the truck or in the two other vehicles was hurt, said Police Chief Mike Gavagan.
Authorities said they were investigating the cause of the accident, which occurred at about 6:30 p.m. Wednesday on U.S. Highway 191, just north of the town of West Yellowstone. The town serves as a western entrance to Yellowstone National Park.
Police initially said all three vehicles struck the bison but later reported that only the truck did.
Speed may not have been a factor in the accident, police said, though “road conditions at the time would dictate traveling below the posted speed limit.”
Bison in the region often congregate near roadways in the winter, where it’s easier for them to navigate amid heavy snow, the police department said. The animals can be hard to see at night because of their dark brown color and because their eyes don’t reflect light, including headlights, like deers’ eyes do, it said.
The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.
Everyone especially Auto mobiles drive extremely fast today as if they are invincible behind the wheel Animals are not and as drivers including my self need to be aware of what is on Our highways and Byways besides automated Vehicles
Did you read the article, please read it again.
Realy that’s what you cast wisdom has taught you you snowflakes are realy something
Anyone that doesn’t understand how hard it is for a semi to stop or avoid such an accident would have a comment like that. Of course it’s “always” the truckers fault…However, what you didn’t think about is, that truck driver had to make a split-second decision whether he is in a position NOT to kill himself or other drivers while trying to avoid the bison. Of course NO ONE wants to kill animals, but sometimes it cannot be avoided. They are not driving a car that weighs 2500#’s ,they are driving vehicles that are loaded at 75,000 #’s and empty 30,000 #’s. Trying to stop these in a matter of 50′ is literally impossible….Use your heads people. Have some sympathy for the driver who had to unfortunately make that decision and now has to live with it.
Actually they’re loaded max at 80,000 but that’s no excuse.. and I’m a truck driver. He was near Yellowstone, common sense says to watch out for animals.
It’s so sad that everyone has to look at truck drivers like we’re criminals and not people I will Amit ever once in a while trucking do hires a suicidal person that makes it bad for everybody but you guys have to remember that we get dressed every morning just like everybody else does but we get treated like our lives doesn’t matters!!!!! God Bless the trucking industry.
I have to comment on Mrpopcorn’s comment. I had a lot of rebuttal from 35 years behind the wheel but I’m going to put it in a nutshell. I’m not attacking you sir but until we as an industry come together and show the country how professional and proud we are to serve this great nation we will not be treated the same. Companies used to make drivers wear uniforms or company apparel. Now drivers are wearing flip flops, pink camouflage daisy dukes with cut off t shirts. I’ve even seen full grown men with heels in a truck stop. Remember God and remember America and everything else will fall in place.
Truck drivers have to make quick decisions out here. We also want people to understand that we are human. One night a car broke down in the middle of a major highway. No one could see the car until you got up on it . It was almost impossible to avoid. It was a black car . You could not see it . Things like this happen all the time.
Yes, sometimes people drive too fast but this situation we are speaking about is not due to speed .
When will the government start to educate the motoring public? For over 40 years they have put out train safety materials. For 40 years they talk about motorcycle safety. The general public to include driver training says nothing about heavy vehicles!!! They government always wants to limit the cdl drivers. 75% of all fatal crashes involving tractor trailers is the fault of the non cdl driver. When will the government educate and regulate the non cdl drivers who cause the accidents?
I’d like that driver’s perspective rather than just a reporter’s viewpoint. It sounds like weather conditions called for prudent speeds according to an officer on the scene. despite the size and weight of the vehicle, one would have thought after hitting one or two large animals, the brakes would have been applied before hitting as many as were killed or injured. I’ve watched a driver purposely kill a deer in broad daylight on a Turnpike with perfect weather conditions. The driver just didn’t care. maybe this was the attitude of this driver. It’s one thing for an animal to suddenly dash out of cover, another to have it trying to get off the road.
At night, you have to be aware. it could have been a broke down vehicle.
As a long time driver I will say this. You never, ever swerve to miss any animal in the road. You hit your brakes and hold the steering wheel tightly. Failure to maintain your lane is a recipe for disaster, not to mention illegal. I don’t care if it’s the interstate, rural or city highway. Train your brain of this habit. Even if the roadway is absolutely clear, never swerve. You could kill yourself or a fellow motorist. If it’s a human in the road, that’s a whole different thing. We only have split seconds to make the right decision, so pay attention and TRAIN YOUR BRAIN.