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Collision at spot along I-10 notorious for accidents

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PORT ALLEN – A man had to be cut out of a mangled semi after a collision in an area of I-10 notorious for wrecks involving tractor-trailers.

The man appeared to be coherent as first responders pulled him from the vehicle. It took more than 30 minutes to cut the cab of the truck apart and free the man who was taken to the hospital. An emergency helicopter and ground ambulances waited as crews worked to free the person.

A second person was also injured in the crash, sources said.

Preliminary information described the injuries as critical.

A dermatology resident stopped to render aid after seeing the crash. Blair Budden was seen, in his scrubs, helping first responders. At one point, he and others assisted in what appeared to be an IV administered to the injured trucker. 

"I was just on my way back to visit family when I came across the accident scene," Budden said.  "There was a couple of people that had already gotten out out to check on the gentleman.  Fortunately, he was stable at the time but jammed in his vehicle," he said.  

The crash happened on I-10 East just before the La. 415 exit. The area is a hotbed for wrecks – a location where slowdowns begin as congestion peaks on the interstate through the city. Routinely, Baton Rouge traffic backs up I-10 East toward the West Baton Rouge/Iberville parish lines.

There have been numerous deadly crashes along the stretch of interstate in the last few months. In an attempt to get drivers to realize they are approaching a congested area, the state installed yellow, diamond-shaped signs on the side of eastbound lanes.

The sign, complete with a flashing yellow light, reads "Be prepared to stop."

"This was a low-cost attention grabber," a state transportation spokesperson said about the signs being installed after the latest round of wrecks.  

All lanes have since reopened on I-10 East. 

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Follow the publisher of this post on Twitter: @treyschmaltz

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