HOWELL COUNTY, Mo. — A West Plains woman was seriously injured after the vehicle she was in ran into cows and a goat in Howell County.

Alychia M. Wilkins, 53, of West Plains was the passenger in a 2013 Chevrolet Silverado driven by John D. Atzert, 55, of West Plains. The Missouri State Highway Patrol investigated a crash involving the Silverado at 5:55 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 10, on Highway E three miles south of South Fork.

“I woke up to being thrown against the windshield and I seen my air bag didn’t deploy,” said Wilkins. “It was just laying on top of the dash. But my boyfriend’s airbag deployed. Passersby had stopped and helped us get out of the vehicle and brought me around to the side of the vehicle by the road and saw a dead cow laying there.”

According to the crash report, the Silverado struck cows and a goat in the roadway. Atzert had no injuries. Wilkins was taken to a West Plains hospital with serious injuries including severe facial bruising and a fractured vertabrae. The Silverado was totaled. Neither occupant was wearing a seatbelt.

A spokesperson for the MSHP said that five of the herd of cows and the goat were killed in the crash.

“From what my boyfriend said, the whole road was covered in cows and there was no time to stop,” said Wilkins. “Deer’s different. When it’s cows, they do a lot more damage I think.”

Wilkins said she called the Missouri State Highway Patrol the day after the crash to find out who owns the livestock and how the animals got into the roadway and she’s waiting for more details. In Missouri, livestock owners run the risk of civil liability if their animals are on the roadway and a collision occurs. Wilkins told Ozarks First she is considering suing for medical damages.

“I’d really like to thank whoever stopped,” she said. “I really appreciate it.”