Shortly after 7 a.m., Wednesday, an 84-year-old Terre Haute man notified 911-dispatchers that his Ford Ranger pickup truck was teetering over a gravel barricade near a 15-20-foot deep hole in the road.
Members of the Clay County Sheriff's Department, Indiana State Police, Posey and Cory Township volunteer fire departments and Clay County Search and Rescue were dispatched to an accident scene on County Road 600 North, a half-mile west of CR 300 W.
The recent flooding caused an approximate 20-foot portion of the road to collapse when a culvert was forced out from under the roadway by fast-moving water. Piles of gravel, which were 3- to 4-foot high, were placed on each side of the hole to stop oncoming traffic from both directions.
Arriving on the scene, emergency personnel discovered the truck had slipped off the barricade and had fallen nose-down into the creek bottom.
According to a press release provided by CCSD Deputy James Switzer late Wednesday evening, the man had minor injuries to his forehead, upper body and knees, but was alert and able to talk.
The unidentified man apparently told officials at the scene the "sun got in his eyes" while driving eastward into the sunrise, causing him to not see the large pile of gravel.
Firefighters were able to recover two oxygen tanks belonging to the driver that were not damaged in the accident. The driver, who was wearing a seatbelt, was transported to Terre Haute Regional Hospital for undisclosed medical treatment.
Officials are withholding the identity of the driver due to the ongoing investigation.
A "Road Closed" sign and barricade was located at the intersection of CR 600 N and CR 300 W, but it is unclear at this time if there was a sign in the area of CR 600 N and CR 400 W. A sign and barricade has been placed in the area to make travelers aware of the dangerous road conditions. The road remains closed until repairs can be made.