Big rig hits 41 embankment

A commercial truck hauling produce southbound on Highway 41 veered off the road this morning and collided with an embankment between Deadwood and Victoria Lane, which forced hours of delays and a temporary closure of the highway as crews worked to clear the area.

CHP officers said Kevin Schroeder, 30, of Sacramento, drove the truck into the embankment at 6:35 a.m., with no injuries or other vehicles involved.

The cause of the crash was undetermined, officers said, as Schroeder claimed an oncoming car forced him from the road while at least one witness said they saw no other drivers involved.

No alcohol or drugs were suspected as part of the crash, officers said.

Crews continued to clear the area past 10:00 a.m. with the highway closed for about an hour until around 10:30 a.m., then reopened to one-lane traffic delays. Highway 41 was completely cleared to all traffic in both directions at approximately 11:45 a.m, CHP office assistant Tina Saffron said, more than five hours after the wreck.

Eppler Towing of Firebaugh provided the only available lift capable of extracting an 18-wheeler. Schroeder was hauling produce for Nor-Cal Produce, Inc. of Sacramento, officers said.