Logging truck accident kills Hat Creek man
John Pringer, 49, was killed when he was caught between a logging truck trailer and a skidder.
The incident occurred about 20 miles northwest of Susanville and roughly eight miles east of Highway 44, near Campbell Mountain and Antelope Mountain on Forest Service Road 21.
The logging road was extremely slick and difficult to even walk on, according to Benny Wallace, the deputy who responded and pronounced Pringer dead. According to Wallace’s incident report, the truck and trailer got stuck on a steep, muddy hill with patches of ice and snow. Pringer pulled his skidder behind the truck and trailer to push it up the hill.
Pringer reportedly stopped because he thought he punctured a tire on the trailer.
The driver exited the truck and Pringer discovered he broke an air fitting on the rear of trailer. The driver saw the truck start to slide down the hill and yelled for Pringer to run. He ran across the side of the haul road and was hit by the trailer before he could get clear. The driver ran to the truck’s radio and yelled for help but Pringer collapsed and the driver could find no pulse before help arrived.
“Pringer was freed from the equipment by other loggers but had no signs of life,” according to a news release from the sheriff’s department.
Employees of Bella Vista-based Franklin Logging reported the incident and the California Highway Patrol was first on scene. The CHP plans no further investigation, according to Undersheriff Si Bollinger.
A SEMSA ambulance crew arrived and ran an EKG, which showed no signs of life. Cal-OSHA was contacted and may investigate further, Bollinger said.
The California Department of Forestry, now known as CAL FIRE, also responded.
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