Accident scatters cows across highway

Accident scatters cows across highway

MT. OLIVE, MS (WDAM) - All lanes on US 49 in  Mt. Olive are open after an accident involving a truck hauling cows caused traffic delays Saturday.

The incident happened around 2:30 a.m. in Mt. Olive at the intersection of US 49 and MS 35.  Mississippi Highway Patrol reported the crash was cleared nearly 11 and a half hours later, around 2 p.m.

Mississippi Highway Patrol Public Information Officer, Brent Barfield, said the first accident that started it all involved a semi pulling a bull wagon loaded with cows.  That wreck then created a chain of accidents, with some cars hitting cows that escaped from the trailer.

There were no human fatalities, but there were several dead cows scattered along US 49.

MDOT District Engineer Albert White said he expected repairs to last through the day Saturday.

"The cow truck turned over and a lot of the cows were out. It caused additional accidents, trying to avoid the cows," said White.  "It also took out our signal and signal poles."

White said crews from Jackson were driving down new poles and it would take some time to reconnect wires.

Officials with the Covington County Emergency Management team said there were 113 cows on the trailer.  Anthony Ingram, who was called to the scene to wrangle cows that got loose, told WDAM 7 there were about 50 cows taken off alive from the trailer and they managed to catch 20 more in surrounding areas.

"As daylight came, we were getting calls from people of cattle everywhere, we've just been roping cattle all morning," said Ingram.  "Kinda scattered, a lot of them are sore."

Ingram said three other men and dogs were able to wrangle about 20 cows.  "These dogs will jump them and we roped in people's yards and people's gardens and neighborhoods," said Ingram.

"Unfortunately, these accidents do occur a lot in our part of the state," said White.   "We're more concerned with the safety of the public. A lot of volunteers out here with county emergency management, trying to round up the additional cows from hurting any other folks."

Eight other accidents occurred as a result of this initial accident in a chain reaction. Reports say five other vehicles hit cows on the road and there was a minor rear end collision immediately after the truck rolled over. A semi-truck headed north left the roadway trying to avoid the cows and got stuck in a ditch. No injuries were reported.

We are working to get more information on what caused the accident from Mississippi Highway Patrol.

This is a developing story.  Stay with WDAM 7 for the latest updates.