1 woman dead after tanker truck accident in Ritchie County


Ritchie County Office of Emergency Management

ELLENBORO, W.Va. – One woman is dead after an accident Sunday in Ritchie County involving a tanker truck.

According to the Ritchie County Sheriff’s Office, a brine truck was heading east on Route 50 just before the Bonds Creek Bridge, near Ellenboro. A witness reported that the truck went into the median and in between the two bridge sections. The truck fell several hundred feet into a ravine, but it did not hit either section of bridge, according to the sheriff’s office.

The truck’s driver, Rosalynn Russell, 57, of Fairmont, died at the scene, according to the sheriff’s office.

The sheriff’s office stated that the incident was not weather related, and there was no indication that alcohol was involved. It is uncertain at this time if Russell suffered a medical issue or if the truck may have had a mechanical issue, according to the sheriff’s office.

Russell’s body has been sent to Charleston for an autopsy.

Emergency crews were alerted to the incident at about 10:25 a.m., according to the Pennsboro Volunteer Fire Department. When crews arrived, they found the tanker truck in between the Bonds Creek Bridges with confirmed entrapment, according to a Facebook post from the Pennsboro VFD.

Crews began an extensive rescue effort to reach the truck, which was down an embankment, according to the post.

Fire departments from Pennsboro, Ellenboro, Harrisville, Cairo, Smithville and Greenwood; Ritchie County EMS; the Ritchie county Office of Emergency Management; the Ritchie County Sheriff’s Office; West Virginia State Police; the West Virginia Division of Highways; and the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection were involved in the incident, according to a post from the Office of Emergency Management.

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