By Aubrey Woods | For The Republic
A truck driver from Michigan died early Sunday morning from injuries he sustained in a fiery crash with another trucker near the 53-mile-marker on Interstate 65, police report.
John A. Gaskin, 54, of Sault Ste. Marie, died as the result of a crash in which he drove into the back of second semitrailer that may not have had working taillights, according to Trooper Matt Holley’s report.
Holley reported Gaskin was driving a 2015 Freightliner truck pulling a box trailer south on the interstate when he collided with the back of a box trailer being pulled by a 2007 Freightliner driven by Abdulahi A. Afrah, 33, of Louisville, Kentucky.
As a result of the collision — reported at about 1:30 a.m., Gaskin’s truck caught fire and burned, according to a news release from Sgt. Stephen Wheeles.
Wheeles, the public information officer for the Indiana State Police Post at Versailles, said Gaskin was pronounced dead at the scene by an official with the Jackson County Coroner’s Office.
Afrah was not injured. Toxicology results on Afrah are pending at this time, and the investigation into the cause of the crash is ongoing, Wheeles said.
The load Gaskin was hauling was a total loss, while some of the load of charcoal Afrah was hauling came out of the trailer, Wheeles said.
Both northbound and southbound lanes of the interstate were closed between State Road 11 at the Jonesville exit and U.S. 50 for about two hours while firefighters from Seymour Fire Department and Jackson-Washington Volunteer Fire Department fought the fire, Wheeles said.
Cleanup of the crash debris in the southbound lanes took about six and a half hours, Wheeles said.
Others assisting at the scene include officers with the Jackson County Sheriff’s Department and medical personnel with Jackson County Emergency Medical Services.