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Police identify driver killed in I-81 crash near Shippensburg - abc27 WHTM

Cumberland County

Police identify driver killed in I-81 crash near Shippensburg

Posted: Updated:
SHIPPENSBURG, Pa. (WHTM) -

State police have identified the driver who was killed Tuesday morning in a fiery crash on Interstate 81 near Shippensburg.

Paul J. Birmingham, 78, of Florida, was heading north on I-81 and hauling a rental trailer when for unknown reasons he crossed the grass median at mile marker 30.5 and struck the southbound tractor-trailer in the fuel tank, setting the semi on fire, according to police.

He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The driver of the tractor-trailer, 40-year-old Vitaly Yurchenko, of Virginia, and a passenger escaped the burning truck with minor injuries.

The crash closed the southbound and northbound lanes for several hours between Exit 37 at Newville and Exit 29 at Shippensburg.

Birmingham's dog was rescued from the crash scene and is being cared for at the Better Days Animal League in Shippensburg. Animal Control Officer Dennis Bumbaugh said the shelter has contacted Birmingham's family about adopting the dog. If they do not, he said the dog will be put up for adoption.

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