OHP trooper hospitalized after being hit by SUV

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SHAWNEE, Okla. - An Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper is in the hospital following an accident along I-40 Tuesday morning.

Trooper Jason Richardson suffered injuries to his legs and head when he was struck by an SUV as it rolled.

"There were multiple vehicles on the side of the road," said Lt John Vincent with the OHP.

Richardson was responding to an accident near I-40 and Highway 177.

He was walking alongside the cable barrier when he was hit.

He was thrown into the westbound lanes of I-40.

Richardson was rushed to OU Medical Center.

He was followed closely by other troopers concerned for his well-being.

"We're all wearing the same uniform, and it affects us deeply in a way other people may not understand," Vincent said.

Vincent said troopers understand the dangers of their job, but drivers can help keep them safe.

"Slow down, pay attention to what's going on, watch traffic in front of you," Vincent said.

He said troopers also do their best to keep themselves safe, especially in high traffic areas.

"The term we we're taught is: 'Have your head on a swivel,'" Vincent said. "We're always watching for problems."

Early indications are the accident was caused by an icy road.

It's something Oklahoma drivers should always watch out for this time of year.

"It is Oklahoma in the winter, and those should always be taken into consider when you're driving down I-40 for instance," Vincent said. "You should always consider the worst when you're driving on bridges like this."

The woman driving the SUV was taken to a hospital with minor injuries.

She has not been ticketed.

OHP officials said the accident is still under investigation.

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