MHP: Road was clear during crash that killed Air Force family

HUNTLEY - Investigators say roads were clear on the day that a family of four died in a wreck on I-94 outside Billings.

The Associated Press reports that 25-year-old Air Force Staff Sgt. Anthony James Dean, his wife Chelsi Dean, 25,  and daughters, 5-year-old Kaytlin and 20-month-old Avri, died in the wreck.

The family's vehicle strayed off I-94 into the median, off a bridge and into a creek sometime on Thanksgiving. The crash scene wasn't found until Friday night.

Montana Highway Patrol Cpt. Keith Edgell says the family's blue Toyota 4Runner went down into the median between the bridge decks and launched off the bridge until it hit the eastbound pillar, causing crushing damage. All four occupants inside died. 

Captain Edgell says he hasn't seen all the reports yet, but he believes the driver of the vehicle may have fallen asleep at the wheel. 

He says it doesn't look like weather or road conditions were a factor in the crash. 

"There was no ice, there's no snow, there's nothing," Edgell said. "Matter of fact, we had a sergeant who had traversed that road earlier that day going to Miles City for the holiday, and he said there were no issues with the roads when he left." 

A semi-truck rolled over near the same area on I-94 on Sunday morning.

KULR-8 asked Captain Edgell if that portion of the highway was a concern. He says at this time MHP is not considering the area to be more dangerous than any other location, despite the tragic incident. 

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