Driver of overturned tanker truck talks with 14 News - Tri-State News, Weather & Sports

Driver of overturned tanker truck talks with 14 News


The injured driver of the tanker truck that overturned Monday morning in Posey County is out of the hospital and back home with his family.

The driver of the tanker truck, 59-year-old John Schmitt, said that he feels perfectly fine. Schmitt does have stitches and some bruising, but no broken bones. Seeing pictures of the overturned tanker he was driving makes that all the more shocking.

"We saw him last night in the hospital and he looked fine. He was doing great. Then I got home. I saw the picture on the news and I was shocked," John's son, Gregory Schmitt, said. 

That his dad was even alive, says an emotional Gregory Schmitt. His dad, John, had been in a serious accident just hours before.

"I really didn't know what to think about what was going on," Gregory said. 

The tanker truck that John was driving had flipped over on 165 in Posey County on Monday. John remembers sneezing, looking up and knowing he was in trouble. 

"Evidently, when the tanker turned over I was knocked unconscious. So, I don't remember anything until the state trooper and another driver came to help me out," John said. 

John says they found him upside down and cut his seatbelt to free him from the semi. 

"The shock came, I think, after I got out of the vehicle. You know, you start to breathe and relax a little bit. I noticed I was just freezing cold and they said that's part of shock," John said. 

Just 24 hours later, John's back at home with his family, holding his 2-year-old granddaughter, Emily, just a little bit tighter. 

"Just the fact that, you know, you're still here. If someone calls you on the phone and you just say, 'yep, glad to hear from you,'" John said to 14 News. 

He's been driving trucks for 36 years, and despite Monday's accident, John says he'll be back on the road in just a week.

Both John Schmitt and his son, Greg, have expressed how thankful they are to everyone who helped get him home safely, from the drivers who stopped, to the state police, and those in the emergency room. They say it's just another reason for the family to be thankful this holiday season.

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