At 4:14 p.m., Indiana State Police troopers and Putnam County emergency agencies responded to crash involving a cement truck and a sport utility vehicle with two persons injured and one dead at the scene.
Preliminary investigation revealed that a 2002 Ford Explorer, driven by Georgia Mathews, 70, Indianapolis, was stopped or was at a near-stop in the eastbound passing lane due to ongoing I-70 construction.
In the front passenger seat was her husband Willis Lee Mathews, 74, Indianapolis, while in the right rear passenger seat was their sister-in-law, Margaret Mathews, 73, Indianapolis. Seatbelts were in use by all three, ISP officials said.
An eastbound 2001 Advance cement truck, driven by William R. Lindeman, 51, of Spencer, was attempting to negotiate around a large section of freshly poured concrete in the eastbound driving lane, police said, when the left wheels of the truck dropped into the wet concrete.
That caused Lindeman to lose control of the cement truck, which then veered to the left and overturned onto the SUV.
The square of soft concrete was described as approximately 12 feet by 20 feet and 26 inches deep.
The cement truck, which was hauling product, weighed approximately 70,000 pounds.
Lindeman was taken to Putnam County Hospital with internal injuries, which were not believed to be life-threatening, Sgt. Joe Watts, public information officer for the State Police Putnamville District, reported.
Georgia Mathews was uninjured and able to free herself from the SUV.
Willis Mathews was trapped in the vehicle for nearly two hours before being extricated by the Washington Township and Cloverdale Township fire departments.
During extrication, Curtis Wrecker Service secured straps and chains to the cement truck and was able to lift it, relieving some of the pressure off the SUV.
Willis Mathews was then airlifted by Air Evac helicopter to Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis for treatment of lower leg and internal injuries. He was conscious during the entire extrication.
The right rear passenger, Margaret Mathews, was pronounced dead at the scene of blunt force trauma, Putnam County Deputy Coroner Steve Walters said.
No citations issued as a result of the accident.
I-70 both eastbound and westbound was closed for nearly two hours due to extrication and the landing/take-off of the medical helicopter.
The crash was investigated by ISP Senior Trooper DuJuan Presley-McFadden.
Assisting at the scene were multiple Putnamville District troopers, Putnam County Sheriff's Department, Putnam County Operation Life and the Indiana Department of Transportation.