GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The husband and wife involved in a wreck on US-131 credit their car, their seat belts and a higher power for saving their lives after a dump truck fell atop their SUV.
Reggie and Sharon Smith were involved in the crash that shut down the southbound lanes of US-131 near the 54th Street exit in Wyoming around 8 a.m. Monday. A semi-truck and a dump truck were involved in the multivehicle wreck.
“We are absolutely walking miracles,” Reggie Smith told 24 Hour News 8 as he left the hospital with his wife.
“I think one of the drivers came up and hugged me and said, ‘You’re the luckiest person I’ve seen today,'” Sharon Smith said.
The couple was checked out at an area hospital and released before noon.
Reggie Smith posted about the ordeal on his Facebook page, showing a picture of his crumpled Lexus SUV pinned beneath the dump truck.
“Thanks be the Lord, Sharon and I are alive,” the post read.
He said he and his wife saw the crash coming but couldn’t get out of the way.
“We couldn’t go to the right because there’s a semi. We couldn’t go to the left because there were cars,” Reggie Smith said. “About five seconds later, the dump truck hit us from behind.”
“It just, it went dark,” Sharon Smith recalled,” and it was just crushing metal and breaking glass all around you.”
Crews righted the dump truck shortly after 9 a.m. then had to clear the pile of sand it spilled onto the highway. Southbound US-131 reopened around 9:38 a.m.
Reggie Smith said he suspects the fact that the dump truck wasn’t fully loaded may have helped prevent their car from being crushed further.
“It could have very easily crushed the vehicle and we would not be standing here today,” Reggie Smith said.
The Smiths also credited their seat belts with helping to keep them safe.
The SUV severely damaged in the crash was a 2004 Lexus 330. It was new to the Smiths — they say they bought it three weeks ago.
“That’s OK,” Reggie Smith said. “The car can be replaced. People can’t.”