Update: Driver who died identifiedPublished 1:06pm Thursday, February 2, 2012
MANCHESTER — A woman is dead as a result of her car colliding head on with a semi pulling a trailer full of hogs Wednesday about three miles north of Manchester.
Felicity Mathieu, 27, of Alden, was extricated from the car and taken to the Albert Lea hospital in an ambulance. She died later Wednesday.
The trucker, Tye H. Kleeburger of Kasson, survived the crash unharmed, according to the Minnesota State Patrol.
The crash happened at a slight bend on Minnesota Highway 13 in heavy fog just north of gravel 280th Street.
The State Patrol reports Mathieu’s car was a red 2004 Pontiac Grand Am headed northbound when it crossed the center line and struck a southbound blue International semi head on.
Authorities closed Minnesota Highway 13 about halfway between Manchester and Hartland, causing traffic backups.
The semi and trailer belonged to Warehouse Plus, based in Oronoco. No hogs were spotted roaming the roadway. The crumpled part of the trailer was at the hitch end. The rear gates still were shut.
The crash happened at about 10:20 a.m. At 10:48 a.m., the askew semitrailer disconnected from its hitch and toppled onto its side, causing squealing hogs to squeal louder suddenly.
The Pontiac landed in the ditch on the west side of the highway, and the semi and trailer ended up on east side of the highway facing southbound when authorities responded.
Heavy fog may have been a factor in the crash, as there was low visibility. The National Weather Service said fog was most dense in rural areas and it could create a thin glaze of ice on some surfaces.
The Albert Lea Fire Department responded to extricate a person from the Pontiac. The Minnesota State Patrol, Freeborn County Sheriff’s Office, Mayo Clinic Health System in Albert Lea’s ambulance crew, and Manchester and Hartland fire departments also responded.
Both vehicles were towed to Allen’s Tow-N-Travel.