Today at 12:58 p.m., troopers assigned to the Massachusetts State Police Barracks in Charlton responded to a two-vehicle crash on the westbound side of the Massachusetts Turnpike in Auburn. The crash resulted in the death of a six-year-old girl and minor injuries to an adult and two other children.
Preliminary investigation by Trooper Mario Tovar indicates that Lodia Rodriguez, 25, of Worcester, was driving a 2000 Chrysler Town and Country van in the middle travel lane when her vehicle made contact with a 2008 International 4400 box truck that was to the right of her van. After the impact, Rodriguez lost control of her van, which struck the guardrail adjacent to the breakdown lane. At this time a six-year-old girl, who was a passenger in the van, was ejected onto the roadway. The van careened to its left across all three lanes, struck the guardrail along the highway median, and then rolled over, coming to rest on its roof in the middle travel lane. Rodriguez and two four-year-old girls who were passengers in the van were transported to the University of Massachusetts Medical Center in Worcester with minor injuries.
The driver of the truck, John Gurr, 32, of New Britain, Conn., was not injured in the crash.
The facts and circumstances of the crash, including why the vehicles made contact and if the child was properly seat belted, remains under investigation by Troop E of the Massachusetts State Police with the assistance of the State Police Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Section and the State Police Crime Scene Services Section. Troopers were assisted at the scene by the Auburn Fire Department and the Department of Transportation’s Highway Division.
During a portion of the crash investigation Route 90 westbound was closed and traffic was diverted onto Route 290 at Exit 10. The roadway was completely re-opened at 4 p.m. During the height of the traffic, the westbound backup was estimated to stretch approximately 10 miles.
Please note that State Police do not release the names of juvenile victims or disclose relationships among people involved in incidents such as this one.
No further information is available at this time. Please do not call the barracks directly.