News

‘Terrible accident’ recounted in 911 tapes of Tracy Morgan crash

‘Terrible accident’ recounted in 911 tapes of Tracy Morgan crash

FATAL CRASH:Actor Tracy Morgan speaks during the taping of the Spike TV special tribute "Eddie Murphy: One Night Only" in 2012. Morgan remains hospitalized following a crash that killed fellow comedian Jimmy Mack. Photo: Reuters/Mario Anzuoni

By Victoria Cavaliere

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A woman who witnessed a multicar collision on a New Jersey highway that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan and killed one of his associates called 911 to report a “terrible accident,” according to audio recordings released on Tuesday.

“There’s a terrible accident. The car flipped. It’s on its side,” the unidentified woman told an emergency operator moments after the early Saturday crash in which a Wal-Mart tractor trailer slammed into a limousine van carrying Morgan and several other people.

“There was an accident on the New Jersey Turnpike. It happened behind us,” another caller said in 911 recordings released by the New Jersey State Police.

Morgan, 45, best known for his roles on “30 Rock” and “Saturday Night Live,” and two other people riding in the van were critically injured and remained in a critical-care unit on Tuesday, said a spokeswoman at the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Center in New Brunswick, New Jersey.

Comic James “Jimmy Mack” McNair, 62, a writing partner of Morgan’s who was also in the van, died at the scene.

A fifth passenger was lightly hurt and released from the hospital.

Morgan’s injuries included a broken leg, nose and ribs and he underwent surgery over the weekend, his spokesman Lewis Kay said in a statement Monday.

Kay dismissed online rumors that Morgan’s leg had to be amputated.

“Rumors about amputating his leg are completely fabricated,” the statement said.

The driver of the Wal-Mart truck, Kevin Roper, 35, has been charged with vehicular homicide and injury by auto for operating his commercial vehicle after not having slept for more than 24 hours, resulting in the fatal crash, according to prosecutors.

He is due to appear in Middlesex County Superior Court on Wednesday.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc said on Tuesday that its 7,175 drivers meet some of the highest safety standards in the industry.

So-called drowsy driving, or driving with too little sleep, causes more than 100,000 crashes a year, resulting in 40,000 injuries and 1,550 deaths, according to the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

(Reporting by Victoria Cavaliere; Editing by Scott Malone, Eric Beech and Gunna Dickson)

Recent Headlines

in Local

No Hate Crime Charge In Northampton Swastika Case

Photo courtesy of Daily Hampshire Gazette

Two teenage girls from Northampton will not be charged with hate crimes.

in Local

Pedestrian Hit By Car In Williamsburg

news-polic

A pedestrian is seriously injured after being hit by a car in Williamsburg.

in Local

Sarno Decries Springfield Snowplow Vandals

dom sarno

Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno is outraged that anyone would attack a snowplow.

in Local

Easthampton Cancels July 4 Fireworks

fireworks

Easthampton will not be holding its July 4th Fireworks celebration this year.

in Local

Police: Westfield Man Bites Cop

handcuffs

A Westfield man faces charges after allegedly biting a police officer inside a cruiser.