October 28, 2013

David Leaming/Morning Sentinel

Police and firefighters survey the scene where a truck loaded with wood crashed into the Pizza Hut in Skowhegan on Monday. The truck rolled over its owner, killing him.

Logging truck rolls over Maine driver, then slams into Pizza Hut

By Doug Harlow
Staff Writer

SKOWHEGAN — An Oakland man was killed Monday morning when his fully loaded logging truck rolled over him and crashed into the Pizza Hut restaurant about five minutes before it was scheduled to open for the day.

The accident killed Michael Morin, 60, owner of Mike Morin Tree-Length Firewood.

There were no customers in the Madison Avenue restaurant at the time of the crash.

Police don’t yet know why the truck started moving after Morin got out of it, said Skowhegan Police Chief Ted Blais.

Damon Ward, the morning cook who opened the restaurant Monday, said he arrived for work about 8:30 a.m. to get ready for the day.

“Five minutes before we opened – it was about 10:55 this morning – I heard a crash, went up front to check and the truck was through my front door,” Ward said. “The driver was underneath the truck. He was out of his truck. I heard the driver call out, saying, ‘I need help.’ So I ran to go get help.”

Ward, of Madison, said he took off his apron and jacket to place under Morin’s head to make sure Morin’s head was level and told his fellow employees to call 911.

Blais, the police chief, said it appeared that the 30-foot-long logging truck, with dozens of logs, had been parked two car rows from the front of the building and that Morin left the truck to go into the restaurant for lunch.

The truck rolled, the right front wheel running over Morin, before it crashed into the main entrance of the restaurant, Blais said.

“He shuts the truck off, gets out, walks toward the building to have lunch and then his truck hits him and crashes right into the building,” Blais said. “The truck went right into the building.”

Blais said Morin was taken by ambulance to Redington-Fairview General Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Doug Harlow can be contacted at 621-2367 or

David Leaming/Morning Sentinel

Firefighters, state police and Skowhegan Police Chief Ted Blais, second from left, investigate the scene where a truck loaded with lumber crashed into the Pizza Hut restaurant in Skowhegan on Monday.

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