New video shows the aftermath of the terrifying dust storm that caused a 21-vehicle pileup on Montana's Interstate 90 on Friday. The huge crash left six people, including two children, dead.
In a nearly two-minute video shared on Facebook, Jose Strickland, who was team-driving a rig with his dad, moves down the middle of the highway, showing the mangled cars and trucks that fill the road and noting casualties and other details.
(Warning: This video may be disturbing.)
"Visibility dropped in an instant, and we found ourselves skidding to a stop and everyone scrambling off the road to safety," Strickland wrote alongside the video. "My heart goes out to the families affected."
Strickland goes on to say that he helped save a man's life but lost another before help could arrive.
"I still can’t get over the fact that we were one truck away from disaster. For whatever reason my Dad Raul Joseph Beger decided to take the wheel after lunch and to say the least I’m glad his experience came into play."
In an interview, Strickland, 26, told TODAY that he and his 54-year-old father Raul Joseph Beger drive for Rivas Trucking out of Houston, Texas, and were on their way from Billings to Aurora when out of nowhere, the dust blew in and created a low-visibility situation.
The father-son team were radioed by an associate, who was just a few feet short of the crash and warned them to stop.
"It was a chain reaction," Strickland said. "There was no alert."
Strickland said that as soon as his dad stopped the vehicle they jumped out and ran to the side of the road.
"My dad has about 32 years of experience and I just got my CDL (Commercial Driver's License) at the end of last month. He’s the one who’s been training me," Strickland said.
Strickland and his father sprung into action, helping authorities to save a man who was trapped in his vehicle.
"Given the area we were in and the amount of people that were affected, first responders were stretched pretty thin," he said. "Once the extraction team was able to open the door, we had to help get him on on the stretcher and into the ambulance."
In the comments, people offered prayers for the victims and respect for those who have the often dangerous job of driving a rig.
The quick-rising storm happened before 5 pm Friday, with winds picking up dust at a gust of 64 mph. The National Weather Service had issued severe thunderstorm over Billings, a city 40 miles west of Hardin, but the winds outran the thunderstorm.
"This just solidified my respect for all the drivers out there," said Strickland. "That’s a lot of responsibility they’re carrying and at any moment lives can be changed."