Fayette County boy, 11, killed in turnpike crash near New Stanton
An 11-year-old Fayette County boy was killed Thursday afternoon when the pickup that his father was driving collided with a tractor-trailer between the New Stanton and Donegal exits of the Pennsylvania Turnpike, officials said.
Westmoreland County Coroner Kenneth A. Bacha identified the victim as Hayden M. Field of Connellsville Township.
According to the coroner’s report, the boy was a front-seat passenger in an eastbound Nissan Frontier that struck the rear of a Freightliner tractor-trailer for an unknown reason and came to rest under the rear of the trailer.
Airbags deployed and the boy was wearing a seat belt, but he became trapped in the pickup, Bacha said. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Bacha has yet to rule on the cause and manner of the boy’s death. An autopsy will be performed Friday by Dr. Cyril H. Wecht and Pathology Associates.
Funeral arrangements were incomplete Thursday night.
The boy was riding with his father, a Turnpike Commission employee, when the crash occurred about 2 p.m., Mt. Pleasant fire Chief Jerry Lucia said. The crash happened in the area of “S” curves in Mt. Pleasant Township, about 8 miles from the New Stanton exit. Thursday was the National Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work Day.
A medical helicopter transported one patient to an undisclosed hospital, a Westmoreland County dispatcher said.
State police were investigating but had not released information about the crash Thursday evening.
All three eastbound lanes of the highway were closed as traffic backed up for more than 2 miles.
The commission closed the eastbound lanes at New Stanton, detouring traffic through Mt. Pleasant and on Route 31 to Donegal.
Carl DeFebo, a turnpike commission spokesman, could not be reached for comment Thursday.
Mt. Pleasant fire units were assisted by firefighters from Kecksburg and Chestnut Ridge, Lucia said. They were on the scene for about an hour.