Semi strikes trailer on I-70 in Summit County, seriously injuring couple |

Semi strikes trailer on I-70 in Summit County, seriously injuring couple

Robert Allen
Summit County correspondent
Post Independent
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Summit Daily/Mark Fox

SUMMIT COUNTY, Colorado – A Denver-area couple was seriously injured Thursday afternoon when a runaway semi truck hit their camper trailer descending westbound Interstate 70 from the Eisenhower Tunnel.

Michael Harlan, 59, of Michigan was driving the semi when it lost its brakes; he was unable to use the truck ramp because it was occupied.

The victims, a man and woman estimated to be in their 60s, were in a Ford Explorer pulling a camper when the collision occurred around 1:40 p.m.

About 50 feet of guardrail was ripped out, and the camper was nearly disintegrated – with contents such as food and camping gear strewn for about 100 yards. The Explorer was separated from the camper and came to a stop in the right lane, facing southeast.

The semi continued off the road for about 100 more yards before becoming wedged in a ditch. The driver sustained minor injuries.

A witness who asked not to be identified was driving on I-70 in the opposite direction when he saw the semi traveling at a high speed with smoke billowing out of its brakes.

“I just had a bad feeling,” he said.

Cpl. Philip Gurley of the Colorado State Patrol said the semi apparently tried to squeeze between two vehicles but hit the Explorer.

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