AUBURN — A tow truck driver working on a disabled vehicle in the breakdown lane of the Massachusetts Turnpike was struck and killed by a box truck Wednesday afternoon, according to state police.
Police identified the victim as Kevin St. Pierre, 22, of Southbridge.
The crash occurred about 3 p.m. on the eastbound side of the turnpike, near Exit 10.
Craig Moran, a Sturbridge selectman and owner of Sturbridge Service Center, confirmed that the tow truck driver worked for his company.
State police identified the driver of the box truck as Richard Taylor, 45, of Taunton. According to Trooper Ronald Ramos, Mr. Taylor was traveling in the right lane when his box truck struck the tow truck driver, who was pronounced dead at the scene.
Mr. Taylor was not injured, state police said.
Mr. Moran said the tow truck driver was towing a disabled car. The car had a flat tire and the driver did not have a spare, he said. The tow truck driver had positioned his truck in front of the disabled car and was in the process of putting it on the flat bed truck when he was struck.
Auburn Fire Rescue Department assisted state police at the scene of the crash, which remains under investigation.
Mr. Moran described the tow truck driver as an exemplary employee and the “nicest boy you’d ever want to meet.”
He said the driver loved his job and always arrived at work on time with a smile on his face. He said the driver never had any customer complaints, accidents, damage or claims.
The employee had just gotten engaged about a month ago and had recently asked for extra hours so he could save money for the wedding.
State police said the crash was being investigated with assistance from three state police units: Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Section, Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Section and Crime Scene Services Section. No charges had been filed Wednesday.
Mr. Moran said that while the accident occurred in the zone his towing company covers, he relinquished responsibility for the vehicles. He said the box truck was towed away and impounded by state police.