A Wasilla man is in critical condition Friday morning, after Alaska State Troopers say he struck a moose in one collision, then was struck hours later by another driver on Knik-Goose Bay Road.
In an email to Channel 2, AST spokesperson Megan Peters says troopers initially spoke with 26-year-old Scott Laney Jr. early Friday. He wasn’t injured in the initial moose collision, and was released at the scene.
“Troopers contacted Laney earlier in the morning off of Hollywood (Road) after Laney struck a moose,” Peters wrote. “It had damaged his car but Laney was able to drive away from the scene.”
AST responded to the Knik-Goose Bay crash, in which Laney was struck, at 5:22 a.m. Another Wasilla man, 35-year-old Zachary R. Kuleck, was headed into the town at the wheel of a 2005 Subaru sedan when he saw a car parked on the side of the road near Mile 8.4.
“(Kuleck) observed a 2002 Crown Victoria on the east (inbound) side of the road. It was stopped on the fog line with its hazards operating,” Peters wrote. “Kuleck moved out to pass the vehicle and saw a male in dark clothing standing in the road waving his arms. Kuleck was unable to stop in time and his vehicle struck (Laney).”
With high winds in the area, Laney couldn’t be medevaced by air ambulance, but he was reportedly taken to Providence Alaska Medical Center in Anchorage, where troopers say he is in critical condition; his next of kin have been notified. Kuleck was wearing a seat belt and was uninjured.
According to Peters, it’s not currently known whether Laney’s initial collision with the moose had any bearing on why he was stopped on Knik-Goose Bay, or if he was signaling for help.
“It’s not known whether (Laney) was on the road intentionally,” Peters said. “Troopers at the scene were getting blown over.”
Peters says troopers are still investigating the cause of the crash, with full cooperation from Kuleck. While toxicology screenings are expected for both men, there aren’t any immediate signs that drugs or alcohol were involved.
Both vehicles were impounded, and no citations have been issued in the collision.
Channel 2's Amberia Hill contributed information to this story.