On Monday afternoon, a collision between a semi-truck and a Princess tour bus closed the Parks Highway near Mile 169 for three hours, according to the Alaska State Troopers. Troopers say that the bus, driven by John Snyder of Trapper Creek, was stopped at a railroad crossing when it was rear-ended by a Lynden Transport semi driven by Jason Avila of Wasilla. The bus was heading north from the McKinley Wilderness Lodge to Denali National Park. Twelve to fourteen of the forty-four bus passengers reported minor injuries and were transported from the scene by ambulance.
Dan Sullivan, candidate for U.S. Senate, was in the midst of an R-V tour on the way to Willow when the accident occurred. He and his staff were delayed, causing the events to be canceled. Thomas Reiker, a spokesman for the Sullivan campaign, says that the candidate and at least one staff member aided in the accident response.
“The road was blocked off. There was emergency personnel responding, and our bus driver, Colonel Otto Feather, retired from the U.S. Air Force, and Dan hopped off the RV to help any way that they could.”
Troopers say that the semi truck’s cargo of batteries was not breached, and the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation responded to the scene to clean up the 200 to 300 gallons of diesel fuel spilled by the crash.