By JOE SUTTER
Traffic was slowed on U.S. Highway 169 south of Fort Dodge when a cement truck spilled some of its load onto the highway Wednesday morning.
"The concrete truck was southbound," said Iowa State Patrol Trooper Paul Gardner. "Right here at (County Road) D43 it lost its load and spilled onto the highway. One car, a Chrysler 300, received minor damage."
A dusty, gravel-filled cement mixture was spread along the road for what Gardner estimated was 1,000 feet.
Gardner said the incident happened when the driver of a mixer truck accidentally hit the wrong switch, dumping the concrete. The driver, Paul Renwanz, of Boone, was cited for spilling on the roadway. The truck is registered to Hamilton Redi-Mix, a Jefferson-based company.
The spill happened around 7:50 a.m.
Iowa Department of Transportation trucks responded to the scene to scrape the mess off the roadway. Traffic was allowed through intermittently, sometimes being stopped to let the trucks work. Vehicles driving on the spilled concrete kicked up thick clouds of dust.
Fort Dodge Jail Administrator Steve Elifrits directed traffic. He said he happened upon the scene shortly after the spill, so he pulled over to help.
"I should have gone to work the back way," he joked.
Also caught driving to work was Deb Allard, of Gowrie, the owner of the damaged Chrysler. She said she was heading north when the southbound truck began spilling in front of her. Before she could react, the dry cement mixture was hitting her car.
"My windshield's toast, there's rock pings all over the place, one of the headlights is gone, there's dents all over it, and the paint is kind of screwed up on the hood," Allard said. "It's just not my day."
"It kind of rattled me a little bit; I've only had my car a couple months," she said. "At least no one was injured."