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Second trucker to ever survive a plunge off of the CBBT finally speaks on terrifying ordeal 

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One of only two truck drivers to ever survive a plunge off of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel is now publicly recounting the incident for the first time. 

Truck driver Matt Killmon’s accident off the CBBT happened on January 6th, 2016, when an oncoming truck moved into his lane and he swerved in response. 

“Everything went in slow motion; you could feel the load shift, everything going sideways, and I at that time thought about taking my seatbelt off,” Killmon said to… The truck then fell off the side of the bridge and Killmon remembers floating out of the truck. “I don’t know how I got out,” he said.

“I was in the water about 50 minutes,” he said. “Praying: I don’t care if I ever do anything again, I just want to live to see my kids grow up.”

Killmon then treaded water for 50 minutes, using a 2×4 from the load he was hauling to help him stay afloat. Eventually, someone on the bridge tossed him a life preserver tied to a rope, which helped him keep from floating out to sea until help could arrive. 

“If he wouldn’t have done that, I don’t think I would have made it. I think I would have kept floating out to sea, and not able to tread water forever,” he said.

A Virginia State Police boat then showed up and pulled Killmon to safety before he was airlifted to a hospital with three broken ribs. He also required staples in his head and skin grafts to repair his severely injured arm. He went through a year of physical therapy to regain his movement. 

Killmon is only the second trucker to survive the fall, after an unnamed trucker back in 1984. A total of 14 trucks have gone off the CBBT bridge since the 1980s. 

“If they made a tall guardrail, truckers would probably still go through it, because if it was too strong and reinforced, it would rip a chunk out of the bridge maybe,” Killmon said. “They could have boats ready to rescue people to make it safer, or maybe just life rings everywhere because I was lucky that guy was there at that time.”

Killmon doesn’t drive trucks anymore, and says he uses his second chance at life to focus on his wife and three children.

“Makes me feel like I got a second chance at life, and I’m trying my best,” he said.

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