An 81-year-old man escaped major injury Tuesday after police said he was hit by a truck with a utility trailer while watching construction work at a site in Johnston.
Crews with a contractor hired by National Grid were working on a gas main replacement project on Contillo Drive at about 10 a.m.
Police said Anthony Carpaco, of Johnston, was struck as the truck was backing up. He was pinned underneath the trailer and dragged more than 100 feet down the street.
"He was yelling, 'Help me! Help me!'" said neighbor Sandy Santagata. "The other truck driver was really, really upset. They were screaming to call 911."
Carpaco was trapped under the truck, and the fire department had to rescue him. He was rushed to a hospital.
"Some cuts and abrasions and taken to Rhode Island Hospital. But as of right now, it does not appear to be life threatening, which is amazing," said Deputy Chief Daniel Parrillo of the Johnston Police Department.
Police said the man was speaking one of the construction workers prior to the accident.
"The construction worker walked away, and that was the last visible contact (they) had. Then a second person got in, and the truck started backing up. We're assuming he never heard the back-up beepers because of all the other noise on the site," Parrillo said.
Johnston police and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration are investigating.
"The beepers were working on the vehicle. We don't see any operator error at this time, but we are still investigating," Parrillo said.