Plane crashes into a semi truck near Vernal


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Alex Cabrero reportingTwo men involved in an airplane crash this morning near Vernal are already out of the hospital. The crash actually involved the airplane and a semi truck after the pilot had to make an emergency landing on Highway 191.

Of all the miles Jody Pixton has driven in his 18-wheeler, mile marker 360 on Highway 191 just north of Vernal is by far the most unusual. "I thought I was seeing things," he said. "[I was] about halfway down the hill and I noticed a plane coming around the corner of the mountain. He was still up in the air."

The pilot of that plane was making an emergency landing after reporting some mechanical problems. Once on Highway 191, his wing clipped Pixton's truck.

"After everything was done, I hurried and got out of the truck and went straight to the plane. I asked the pilot if he was OK, and he looked at me like I was ... 'Who are you?'" Pixton said.

The pilot, 45-year-old Bart Hyde and his 17-year-old son, Austin, were both taken to Ashley Regional Medical Center. Dr. Mark Holyoak says the two are very fortunate. Just a few hours after they came into the hospital they were released.

"To be able to walk out instead of on a stretcher or otherwise was phenomenal. Very fortunate individuals," Holyoak said.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is now handling the investigation to find out exactly what went wrong.

For Pixton, who hurt his shoulder in all the action, it was just another day behind the wheel -- although, a very unusual day. "I never thought, you know, ‘Hey, I'm going to have an airplane pull out in front of me,'" he laughed.

The plane is being transported to the Vernal airport where FAA officials will conduct an investigation into the crash.

E-mail: acabrero@ksl.com

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