Crash closes Route 7 in Brandon
By Erin Mansfield
STAFF WRITER | August 29,2014
Anthony Edwards / Staff Photo
The driver, Spencer Mumford, 22, of West Rutland, was bloodied but walked away from a side-swipe crash with a tractor-trailer on Route 7 in Brandon on Thursday.
BRANDON —A side-swipe collision between a passenger car and a tractor-trailer sent a car door flying 50 feet and closed Route 7 for a half hour Thursday afternoon.
Neither driver was seriously hurt, though one was treated by an ambulance crew at the scene.
Spencer Mumford, 22, of West Rutland was driving a Honda Accord south on Route 7 just north of Otter Valley Union High School when he veered into the other lane, police said.
Sharwin Victor, who was driving a tractor-trailer for Hannaford Supermarkets, was northbound on the same road.
Victor said in an interview he maneuvered onto the shoulder along the right side of the highway, near the intersection of Country Club Road, to avoid hitting Mumford’s car.
Brandon Police Officer Ben Herrick said the accident happened at 4:20 p.m.
By 4:30 p.m., Brandon firefighters had the scene closed off and diverted traffic through a nearby parking lot.
“I was on my way to Burlington, and I had two stops,” Victor said. “I was doing the speed limit coming around the turn, and I saw someone drifting. My main focus was to avoid him.”
“I don’t know if he was trying to pass them or not paying attention, but he just ended up drifting in my lane,” Victor said.
Mumford had blood running down the left side of his head and body and was treated at the scene by the Brandon Area Rescue Squad. He declined to be taken to the hospital.
His car had severe damage on the driver side, the airbag had deployed, and the left front tire was destroyed. The Hannaford truck appeared to sustain minor damage.
A tow truck arrived to clean up the scene around 5 p.m., and firefighters opened the Route 7 northbound lane.
Herrick called the reason for Mumford’s drifting “unknown.” He said the incident was nearly a head-on collision, avoided because Victor swerved out of the way.
Victor said he has driven trucks for 10 years and has never had an accident. Mumford declined to be interviewed.