LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - A Kentucky State Police trooper was flown to the hospital Tuesday morning after he crashed his cruiser on Interstate 75 and went over a steep embankment. Police tell us the call for help came from the trooper himself.
The trooper involved in the crash, Houston Lewis, is from KSP Post 13 in Hazard. We are told Lewis was on his way to training in Frankfort when he lost control of his cruiser and went down a 150-foot embankment around mile marker 41 of I-75, destroying his cruiser and leaving him unconscious.
“Early Tuesday morning Trooper Houston Ethan Lewis was driving northbound on I-75 when something happened, and he ran off northbound Interstate 75. It's believed that was about 7 a.m.,” said KSP Trooper Lloyd Cochran.
Investigators think Lewis was in the wrecked cruiser for about two hours before he came to and called for help.
"Approximately 9 a.m., the trooper himself did call. He was able to retrieve his cell phone from the wreckage and call us via 911," said Cochran.
Because Lewis’ cruiser went over a steep embankment, the crash was not visible from the road. Police say if the trooper had not called in his own crash, it is unlikely anyone would have seen it or known it had happened.
"Thank God he was able to retrieve his cell phone and say he was involved in a collision," said Cochran.
Lewis was flown to U.K. Hospital where he is in stable condition. We are told he will need surgery.
Traffic was stopped on the northbound lanes of I-75 at exit 41 to allow for the investigation and crash reconstruction. Police tell us it took approximately an hour for a tow truck to pull the cruiser up the embankment. All lanes of I-75 are now back open.