Man hit, killed while changing tire on U.S. 60


by Catherine Holland

Posted on April 27, 2010 at 6:54 AM

Updated Tuesday, Apr 27 at 8:23 PM

MESA -- A fatal wreck involving a man changing a tire on westbound U.S. 60 between Dobson and Alma School roads sparked a serious traffic backup Tuesday morning.

It happened at about 6:30 a.m. According to the Department of Public Safety, this was a chain-reaction wreck involving five vehicles.

It started with a pickup truck that was stopped in the gore point, possibly to change a tire.

A blue Hyundai that was on the ramp to get onto the freeway was hit from behind by a gray 2001 Audi, causing it to slide into the stopped pickup. The pickup then hit the driver, who was walking back toward a highway assistance vehicle.

The driver was knocked onto U.S. 60 and he was run over by a white van.

The victim has been identified as Kevin Maples, 31, of Chandler.

The driver of the Hyundai was taken to a nearby hospital with non life-threatening injuries.

The wreck was blocking three of the six freeway lanes. The Alma School eastbound ramp was also closed. The backup at 6:30 a.m. was between three and four miles. An hour later, that backup was up to five or six miles.

DPS was finally able to re-open the freeway to traffic shortly before 10 a.m.

The driver of the Audi, Darcy Gaye Christensen, 46, of Scottsdale, was cited for failure to control a vehicle to avoid a collision and driving in violation of a restriction.