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Trucker: Navigation System Put Him on Crash Course with Low Bridge in Port Chester

Accident shuts down North Main Street traffic, but railroad bridge not damaged.

A long-haul trucker from Arkansas blamed his onboard navigation system for putting him on a course that led to his tractor trailer slamming into the railroad bridge on Nort Main Street in Port Chester Thursday night, according to Port Chester police.

The bridge carrying Metro North Commuter Railroad tracks was not damaged. However, the collision caused the truck filled with cans of soda to topple over beneath the bridge. The accident led to the closure of North Main Street at Mill Street until a heavy-duty tow truck could remove the stuck truck.

The trucker, a 41-year-old man from Warren, Ark., was not hurt in the incident. He was cited with a violation for driving a vehicle that exceeded the posted height limit and released on $240 bail pending a hearing in Port Chester Village Court.

The driver was also the owner of the rig involved in the accident.

Police said the truck hit the bridge at about 8:30 p.m. Lt. James Ladeairous said the truck driver told village officers that his onboard navigation unit directed him to exit the New England Thruway in New Rochelle and take Route 1 for his journey through Westchester on his way to Massachusetts.

The route through Port Chester, police said, is marked with signs warning truck drivers of the low-bridge. However, Ladeairous said the same bridge has been repeatedly struck by oversized trucks — despite the warning signs.

Traffic was diverted in the area of the bridge until a heavy-duty tow rig from East Coast Towing in Stamford, Conn., arrived and removed the wrecked trailer from beneath the bridge.

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