DNA testing will identify person killed in U.S. Route 322 crash

One person died in a tractor trailer crash Wednesday.
One person died in a tractor trailer crash Wednesday. nthomas@centredaily.com

One person died due to a single-vehicle crash at 1:09 a.m. Wednesday on U.S. Route 322, according to Hope Fire Company.

Centre County Coroner Scott Sayers said DNA testing will be done to confirm the person’s identity, though he could not give a timetable for when the results would be complete.

State police at Philipsburg said in a release that the person was driving a tanker westbound near Port Lane in Rush Township when a bear entered the roadway. Police said the tanker hit the bear, lost control, crossed the center line of the road and overturned.

Initial dispatch advised a multiple vehicle crash with several explosions, entrapment and fire, Hope Fire Company said on Facebook. The crash closed Route 322 between Philipsburg and Port Matilda, but the road reopened for the morning commute.

It was closed again in both directions at about noon Wednesday until a one-lane opening at 3 p.m. The road was shut down to transfer cargo from the tanker and to remove the vehicle from the crash site. All lanes were reopened about two hours later.

“PennDOT thanks area drivers for their patience during this closure,” the state Department of Transportation said in a statement.

Chester Hill, Columbia and Alpha fire companies and Penn State hazardous materials were also dispatched to the scene.

Shawn Annarelli: 814-235-3928, @Shawn_Annarelli