A pedestrian was hit by this 18-wheeler Thursday night on U.S. Highway 278 W in Cullman. (Courtesy of the Cullman Police Department)
Updated 10-4-18 10:33 p.m.
CULLMAN – A pedestrian was hit by an 18-wheeler on U.S. Highway 278 West near Johnny's Bar-B-Q Thursday evening. The incident happened a little before 8 p.m.
The pedestrian, Tony Speegle, 63, of Cullman was airlifted to Huntsville Hospital with head injuries.
Cullman Police Department (CPD) Chief Kenny Culpepper said an Air Evac Lifeteam helicopter landed at the ball fields by West Elementary.
Speegle was crossing U.S. 278 when he was hit. Culpepper described the impact as "a glancing blow."
According to CPD Traffic Homicide Investigator Joey Duncan, Speegle was alert after the impact. Duncan said Speegle was thrown approximately 15 feet from the point of impact, which was the inside, eastbound lane of U.S. 278 just east of the intersection of Denson Avenue, about a block east of Johnny’s.
Duncan said the 18-wheeler, driven by Glen Hunt, 70, of Eva was hauling gasoline.
Duncan and CPD Traffic Homicide Investigator Jonathan England traveled to Huntsville Hospital to gather more information.
“Mr. Speegle left his residence, which is close to the scene of the accident, walking to Charlie’s Leather, where they were having barbecue sandwiches,” said Duncan. “He crossed the highway and was struck by the semi.”
Duncan continued, “Upon investigating, it was determined that the pedestrian, Mr. Speegle, was the at-fault party. He was issued a citation for pedestrian on roadway.”
Duncan said Speegle is talking and fully alert and has “serious, but not life-threatening injuries.”
Of Hunt, Duncan said, “He’s obviously is a little shaken up due to the accident, but he had no physical injuries.”
As for what caused the incident, Duncan said, “There is low visibility in that area for a pedestrian to cross the road in a non-designated area. Mr. Speegle said he didn’t see the semi. But the semi had its lights on. Witnesses told us the truck had its lights on, and there is nothing to lead us to believe that he (Hunt) was going above the speed limit. The pedestrian was not observant of his surroundings. There’s no designated crosswalk where he crossed, but 30 feet east there is one, but he did not choose to use that.”
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