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Big-rig crash spills 5,000 chickens onto freeway near Vacaville

October 20, 2011 |  9:51 am

Chicken crashIt was only a temporary reprieve from death row for about 5,000 chickens headed to a processing plant early Thursday morning in Northern California.

A big rig carrying crates with about 5,000 live chickens crashed into another big rig, tossing the crates and poultry onto Interstate 80 near Vacaville about 2 a.m., KTXL-TV Channel 40 reported.

Freeway Chickens: This isn't the first spill

The crash resulted in the closure of all westbound lanes for several hours as authorities tried to corral some of the escaped chickens who were –- yes, we'll say it -– trying to cross the road.

The driver of the chicken truck had apparently fallen asleep and was swerving on the freeway. The other truck, carrying jugs of water, was stopped on the shoulder with mechanical problems. He tried to radio the poultry truck driver to wake him up, but got no response. The trucks clipped each other, and one of the trailers carrying the chickens jack-knifed and spilled the chicken crates onto the road.

An elderly couple in an SUV swerved to avoid the chickens and debris on the road and drove into a ditch. They were taken to the hospital for treatment, the television station reported.




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-- Kimi Yoshino

Photo: About 5,000 chickens spilled onto the freeway near Vacaville after a big-rig crash early Thursday morning. Credit: KTXL-TV Channel 40