Early this morning, a tractor trailer loaded with 62 yearling bulls crashed on the Poplar Street Bridge ramp from Illinois to westbound Interstate 70. The truck was headed to Axton, Colorado when the load shifted on the sharp curve of the ramp and the trailer overturned ending up balanced precariously over the rail.

A tractor trailer loaded with 62 yearling bulls crashed on the Poplar Street Bridge ramp from Illinois to westbound Interstate 70.

Members of the Missouri Emergency Response Service and Earlene Cole, director of Longmeadwo Rescue Ranch, working hard to get an injured bull up on his feet.

The rescue team from the Humane Society of Missouri and the Missouri Emergency Response Service (MERS) arrived on the scene around 1:30 a.m.  More than a dozen loose bulls were rounded up and loaded on rescue trailers. The team then secured gaping openings in the trailer caused by the wreck so that the trailer could be righted without additional cattle escaping. Forty-five bulls survived. All, except one, were transported to a temporary holding area. As of late morning, one bull remains at large. The survivors, now property of the transporter’s insurance company, will be taken to a holding facility in Illinois.

In a bizarre and very sad coincidence, today is the one-year anniversary of the horrific wreck of a double deck trailer carrying 42 horses on Interstate 44 in Franklin County, Missouri. Rescuers from the Humane Society of Missouri’s Longmeadow Rescue Ranch and MERS also led this team. Twenty-five horses and one hinny survived that accident. With excellent veterinary care from several area equine veterinary hospitals and constant attention from Longmeadow staff, today seven of those survivors are in new, adopter homes and 13 additional horses are available for adoption.

The Humane Society of Missouri and its Longmeadow Rescue Ranch have been designated as first responders in emergencies and disasters involving animals. Staff and volunteers receive monthly training to prepare for emergencies such as these. The quick and professional actions of the rescue team in both incidents directly contributed to the survival of many of these animals.