After Vehicle-Pedestrian Crash Near 494, Authorities Point to Safety PSA

March 06, 2018 06:12 PM

Bloomington police last month issued a public service announcement about the dangers of getting out of a vehicle after an accident.

"Stay in the vehicle, keep your seatbelt on, keep your flashers going and call 911 as soon as you can," said Bloomington police Deputy Chief Mike Hartley.


Police reemphasized the call for safety following news that a 35-year-old St. Paul woman was injured when she was struck after exiting a vehicle that had gone off the road on the exit ramp to Highway 169 from Interstate 494 West Tuesday morning in Bloomington.

RELATED: St. Paul Woman Struck After Exiting Car That Had Gone Off the Road

The Minnesota State Patrol reports Phai Thao was driving a 2003 Toyota Camry when she lost control of the vehicle and ran off the road just after 5 a.m. Tuesday. She then exited her vehicle and was standing next to it in the median. 

According to the State Patrol, a 2007 Nissan Quest driven by 37-year-old Mounds View man then hit some snow while on the exit ramp and lost traction. The Nissan struck the unoccupied Camry, which then struck Thao.

Thao was transported to Hennepin County Medical Center. The State Patrol said her injuries are considered serious, but she was able to speak with a state trooper and with paramedics responding to the scene.

Though authorities urge drivers and passengers to stay in their vehicles after such incidents, tow truck drivers are unable to make that precaution by necessity of their work. 

Apple Valley tow truck operator Chris Purcell, of Purcell Towing, was nearly hit Monday while working outside after a truck had lost control and slid into his vehicle. 

"It was close," Purcell said. "If I hadn't kind of jumped from reflexes, he probably would have crushed me between his truck and my truck. Just stay in your car until a police officer, State Patrol, highway helper, tow truck or somebody shows up and let's you know it's OK to get out."  


Joe Mazan

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