Two Corcoran correctional officers recovering from injuries in Tulare Co. crash

TULARE, Calif. (KFSN) -- Two state correctional officers were in an ugly wreck on Highway 43 in Tulare County on Tuesday morning.

Officials say they were driving a transport van back to Corcoran State Prison, after an assignment at an area hospital.

The California Highway Patrol says there weren't any prisoners inside.

"Two corrections transport officers were in the vehicle," said CHP Sgt. Ryan Pedersen. "For whatever reason-it's still under investigation trying to determine why-that northbound van the driver drifted into the southbound lane."

Pedersen says the van hit the front left side of a southbound big rig.

Somehow, both vehicles veered off the road to the west.

But the officer who was driving the van was pinned in, and it took some time before firefighters were able to get him out.

Pedersen says he had significant injuries to his lower body.

The investigation is still ongoing, but they don't believe he was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or distracted-they found his phone in his pocket.

"He was coherent at the scene," Pedersen said. "He was talking to us at the scene at least."

The driver was flown by helicopter to a hospital, where he continues to be treated for his injuries.

The other officer has since been released from the hospital.
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