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Police: Distracted driver causes Beltline crash that kills cow

Published On: Oct 07 2012 08:58:16 AM CDT   Updated On: Oct 08 2012 02:04:06 AM CDT

Madison police have cited a 26-year-old woman for inattentive driving in a crash that killed a prize-winning cow returning from the World Dairy Expo.

Police said the woman was reading a text message while driving Saturday night. She allegedly swerved into a cattle trailer in the next lane, causing the trailer to crash into a ditch and overturn.

Inside the trailer were eight prize-winning Jersey cows from the Dairy Expo valued at around $500,000.

The Wisconsin State Journal reported one cow died in the crash. The others were led safely from the overturned trailer by other Expo-goers who saw the crash and stopped to help.

Neither driver was hurt.

World Dairy Expo general manager Mark Clarke said the owner of the cow is from a state outside of Wisconsin.

Police said the 26-year-old woman was driving eastbound on the Beltline at about 9:45 p.m. when her attention was diverted to an incoming text message and she swerved to the left, striking a cattle trailer that was also going eastbound.

The collision caused the trailer to begin swaying and the driver of pickup pulling it was unable to maintain control, police said. The truck and trailer went into the ditch, and the trailer overturned.

Additional trailers were summoned to remove the surviving cattle.

Police said the 26-year-old driver was cited for inattentive driving.  

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