UPS Inc. and FedEx Corp. are coping with the aftermath of the deadly highway crash that killed two drivers on a Pennsylvania highway on Saturday, scattering cardboard boxes onto the asphalt.
In all, the crash left five people dead and more than 60 injured, after a tour bus hit an embankment and rolled over at about 3:30am on Saturday while traveling westbound on Interstate 76, also known as the Pennsylvania Turnpike. The bus was then struck by three tractor-trailers following behind it near Mount Pleasant, Pennsylvania, some 30 miles east of Pittsburgh, according to published reports.
Investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) are now at the scene, examining factors such as roadway design, driver performance, motor carrier compliance, mechanical aspects of the vehicle, survival factors, and accident reconstruction, an NTSB member said in a news conference.
In the meantime, both parcel carriers involved in the wreck are coping with the impacts, including both the loss of employees' lives and delays in package delivery.
"Sadly, UPS confirms the identities of two of our drivers who are victims of this tragic incident," UPS spokesman Matthew O'Connor said in an email. "Daniel Kepner, age 53, had 5 years of service, and, Dennis Kehler, age 48, had 28 years of service. Both were driving together in a tractor trailer vehicle out of our Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, operating center. Our drivers will be missed and our thoughts and prayers go out to their families."
FedEx issued a similar statement through a spokesperson, saying: "First and foremost we extend our deepest condolences to the families of the individuals involved in this accident. There is no higher priority for FedEx Ground than safety, and we are cooperating fully with investigating authorities at this time."
According to UPS, the truck in the crash was carrying cargo on a "feeder" route between two regional package centers, meaning that most of the freight consisted of ground parcels, the company said. In these situations, police and other authorities typically impound the vehicle and its cargo for the duration of the investigation. That means UPS has contacted both shippers and receivers of each package to inform them of a delay in delivery, the company said.