Truck rolls, spilling chickens in downtown Salem

SALEM, Ore. (AP) - Police say a commercial tractor-trailer rig hauling about 5,400 live chickens overturned Tuesday in downtown Salem, Ore., spilling birds into the street.

Police Lt. Dave Okada said "a considerable number" of chickens died in the crash and many others appeared to have died during a nearly six-hour cleanup.

The Salem Statesman Journal reported some birds lay lifeless in the street, and others walked slowly in circles.

Okada says the load originated in rural Polk County, Ore., and was bound for Kelso, Wash. He says the driver, 41-year-old Patricia Aguilar of Kelso, was taken to a hospital for observation.

In a statement, Foster Farms said it contracted with a hauling company to transport the chickens.

The statement said Foster Farms is "committed to the safety of live poultry during transport" and regrets the accident. The company said the birds were being hand-collected and no dead birds would enter the food supply.

The crash remains under investigation.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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