Crash closes portion of Highway 37

Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Crash aftermath Democrat Photo The Tyson Foods tractor-trailer that was involved in a two-vehicle head-on collision at 12:55 a.m. Friday at Midway on Highway 37 was hauled away from the scene by a wrecker. The fire that resulted from the crash destroyed both vehicles. The highway was closed between Monett and Midway for around eight hours.

A head-on crash that left one Barry County man dead closed down a portion of Highway 37 between Monett and Purdy early Friday morning.

Billy J. Walker, 37, of Exeter, was killed when the 2000 Ford F150 pickup he was driving crossed the centerline and struck a Tyson tractor-trailer head on. Danny P. Beck, 61, of Jay, Okla., who was operating the Tyson truck, was not injured in the crash, according to the Missouri State Highway Patrol report.

Troopers responded to the crash at 12:55 a.m. Friday. The collision occurred three miles south of Monett at Midway where Highway 37 and Highway BB intersect.

In addition to the Highway Patrol, officers from the Purdy, Monett and Pierce City police departments and the Barry County Sheriff's Office responded to the crash along with the Purdy and Monett fire departments and the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT).

The highway was remained closed until around 10 a.m. on Friday as clean-up crews finished clearing the area of debris from the crash.

According to individuals at the scene of the clean-up, the truck was carrying finished food products, which had to be hauled away from the crash site in dump trucks. The charred tractor and trailer were removed from the scene by a wrecker.

The crash marks Troop D's 45th traffic fatality this year.

Trooper Travis Hilburn investigated the crash with the assistance of Patrol Sgt. B. Talik.

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