The Wyoming Highway Patrol (WHP) provided new information on a crash that claimed the life of a truck driver last month.
An incident report from WHP confirms that Texas-based truck driver Javier Cardoso-Reyes, 47, contacted his company to report issues with his brakes prior to his fatal single vehicle crash on a stretch of mountain highway near Buffalo known locally as “Dead Man’s Curve.”
The report also stated that Cardoso-Reyes drove past a runaway truck arrestor and a runaway ramp.
The crash occurred around noon on August 17 on U.S. Highway 16 near mile marker 86 through Mosier Gulch into Buffalo.
See below for the full currently available report from WHP:
“The Freightliner was traveling east on US16 down a steep mountain pass. According to statements made by the company, the driver contacted them saying he was having difficulties with his brakes. The Freightliner traveled down the mountain pass, driving past the runaway truck catch net system as well as a runaway truck ramp. Just after passing MM 86, the Freightliner began to enter a left-hand curve in the roadway. The driver was unable to maintain control of his vehicle as he was traveling too fast to negotiate the corner. The combination exited the roadway to the right and began to roll onto its passenger side. The Freightliner struck the guardrail and went over it, causing the combination to drop off a very steep cliff. After impacting the ground at the bottom, the cab separated from the frame, and the trailer and tractor also separated, sending a load of drill pipe scattered across the bottom of the canyon. The tractor frame caught fire and burned up.“
Cardoso-Reyes died at the scene.
There have been several truck accidents in Mosier Gulch over the years — some of them fatal.
In July 2021, a truck driver traveling down Mosier Gulch lost control and took the runaway truck arrestor. The Buffalo Bulletin reports that the truck went through all 10 nets that are part of the arrestor system, but that the driver and a passenger were able to get out of the cab and weren’t injured.
The Wyoming Department of Transportation says that they’ll continue to work to educate truck drivers on what to expect in terms of turns and the steep grade in the area. They are also looking at possible upgrades to the “CatchNET” truck arrestor systems on Highway 16 and Highway 22 (Teton Pass), according to Cowboy State Daily.