A tow truck driver was killed Wednesday night while responding to a crash involving multiple vehicles on Interstate 495 in Andover, according to Massachusetts State Police.
The crash on I-495 south at I-93, by exit 39, happened at about 11 p.m, and left 41-year-old Daniel Coady Jr. of North Andover dead.
A preliminary investigation indicates that state police were at the scene of a two-vehicle crash when a tow truck operator was standing next to the left side of his truck in the breakdown lane loading a vehicle onto his flatbed.
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Police said a Pontiac G6, which was traveling southbound, struck an unoccupied BMW located in the breakdown lane before striking the left side of the tow truck and then the tow truck operator. The Pontiac became disabled in the right travel lane and was subsequently struck by a Hyundai Santa Fe, which was traveling southbound through the crash scene.
Authorities said Coady was taken to Saint’s Memorial Hospital in Lowell, where he was pronounced dead.
"Daniel Coady Jr. was a 25-year employee of Coady's Towing," that company's owner, Frank Coady, said in a statement. "He was a husband and father to his loving wife and sons. Our hearts are filled with sorrow by his loss."
The tragedy is having an impact on the entire towing community. They say the deadly crash highlights the dangers they face on the job and they hope what happened will force more drivers to move over and slow down.
"When you go out, you never know," said Robert Sheehan, owner of Sheehan's Towing in Methuen. "You try and preach safety, but there's only so much they can do if the other drivers aren't paying attention."
Another tow truck operator, a 44-year-old Lawrence man, who was on top of the flatbed assisting the first tow truck operator, was injured when he fell from the truck following the collision. He was taken to Lowell General for minor injuries.
The driver of the Pontiac, a 28-year-old Lawrence woman, was also taken to Lowell General Hospital for treatment of serious injuries. The operator of the Hyundai, a 26-year-old Lawrence woman, was not hurt.
This crash remains under investigation with assistance from the State Police Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Section, Crime Scene Services Section, and troopers assigned to the Essex County District Attorney’s Office.
No charges have been filed at this time.