Karen Woods, a 43-year-old nurse from Elizabeth, and Vicky Thomas, age unknown of Goodland, Kan., were passengers in the ambulance and were pronounced dead on scene. Thomas was Schlichenmayer’s sister-in-law.
Chris Larusso, 22, and Dan Beza, 31, were transported to Sterling Regional Medical Center with unknown injuries Tuesday night. Larusso was driving the ambulance and Beza was the E.M.T. onboard the ambulance. Both have been released from the hospital. The semi driver, Plamen Zelyamov, was not injured.
Schlichenmayer’s husband Mark “thanks the community, especially those in Burlington, Colorado and Goodland, Kansas, for their thoughts and prayers.” He is focused on his wife’s recovery and that of his new son.
Colorado State Police have said that the ambulance was attempting to change lanes from the right to the left when it’s right front end collided with the left rear of the trailer, ripping that side of the ambulance off.
I-76 was closed Tuesday evening for nearly six hours.
Larusso has not been found at fault at this point. 9NEWS found that Colorado court records show that Larusso pleaded guilty to charges of speeding in July of 2005. He was driving more than 20 miles over the limit and also had a count for “speeding too fast for conditions”.
The cause of the accident is still under investigation and police have not said if anyone will be charged as a result of the accident.
Rural/Metro Ambulance, an Arizona-based company that provides ambulance services across the country, offered their condolences and support to the victims and their families. The company says it is giving its full support and cooperation to the State Patrol during the investigation.