A work truck crashed through the side of the entomology research lab on the corner of Raymond Stotzer Parkway and Agronomy Road on Thursday, leaving the driver of the vehicle hospitalized.
The cause of the accident is currently thought to be a medical issue suffered by the driver, according to Lt. Bobby Richardson of the University Police Department. The truck belongs to JL Malone and Associates, LLC, an electrical construction company.
Richardson said video footage shows the truck beginning to swerve while heading West on Raymond Stotzer, sideswiping another vehicle in a turn lane before turning in a wide arc onto Agronomy and colliding with the building.
Texas A&M Emergency Medical Services arrived on the scene and immediately transported the driver to a local hospital, according to Richardson. A male sitting in a desk inside the building when the truck collided with the wall was treated at the scene for minor abrasions on his back and also transported to the hospital.
Others inside the building were evacuated as damage to the building was evaluated. The hole left by the truck is being boarded up and an engineer will be sent to assess the building’s structural integrity, Richardson said.
Renee LeGros, wildlife and fisheries sciences sophomore, was waiting for a bus nearby when the accident occurred.
“I turned around and next thing I know this white truck is jumping the curb,” LeGros said. “It ran over a poor little tree and right into the building.”
Drawing on her first aid training, LeGros dialed 911, handed the phone off to a friend and jumped into action, approaching the site of the accident to assist the driver of the truck.
“The least I could do to help was just to make sure the guy was in stable condition until the EMTs could arrive,” LeGros said.
LeGros said she saw another man inside the building underneath rubble from the collapsed wall and window before two people from the adjacent hallway helped him out to safety.
Noticing that smoke from the vehicle and powder from the deployment of the airbags could be hazardous to the driver’s breathing, LeGros and other bystanders made the decision to move the driver away from the truck.
“The other reason is because the seat was pinning him sort of against a wheel in a sideways kind of fashion, so he did not have any solid cushion or any kind of seat behind him,” LeGros said. “So if he did have a spinal injury, the better thing to do would be to get him propped against something more firm, aside from him just trying to support his own weight.”
Moving him from the truck to an office chair retrieved from building, LeGros said she noticed the driver was having trouble moving or responding to questions. EMTs arrived shortly after and transferred the driver to the hospital where he remains as of Thursday evening.
“I took an oath to help people whenever I can until somebody who’s more qualified than myself shows up, so I did and I just hope that other Aggies will do the same in the future,” LeGros said.
This article will be updated as more information becomes available.