An Augusta County fire truck was parked in the right northbound travel lane, with its emergency lights activated, to attend to a minor crash that had occurred earlier in the northbound lanes of I-81 at the 223 mile marker. (The vehicles involved in that crash were on the right shoulder).
A Smart Fortwo was traveling north in the right lane when it tried to suddenly merge into the left lane to avoid striking the fire truck. When it attempted to move to the left lane, the Smart car sideswiped a Dodge pickup truck (that was in the left lane) and then struck the trailer the pickup was towing. The impact of the crash forced the Smart car back into the right travel lane where it struck the fire truck. The Smart car then overturned.
The driver of the Smart vehicle, Gene A. Ricci, 78, of Rhode Island, and his passenger, Kathleen M. Chamberlain, 60, of Rhode Island, were not wearing seat belts and were ejected from the car. Both were transported to UVA Medical Center for treatment. Ricci is being treated for life-threatening injuries. Chamberlain is being treated for serious injuries.
Both the pickup truck and fire truck suffered minor damage. No one in those vehicles or at the scene was injured.