The Merrick County Sheriff’s Office in Central City, NE. and a multitude of other agencies responded to a 911 page involving a three-vehicle crash on Saturday at 2:48 p.m. between Lockwood Road and Worms Road on U.S. Hwy 30 in rural Merrick County.
Preliminary investigation and witness reports concluded the driver of a 2009 Dodge Journey was traveling eastbound on U.S. Hwy 30 when it collided with a westbound 2010 Peterbilt semi pulling a trailer loaded with livestock. A secondary collision occurred between the Dodge Journey and a 2012 Ford Focus directly behind the semi tractor-trailer.
The driver of the Dodge Journey was 32 year old, Lincoln resident, Bernie Turner, JR. The driver of the Peterbilt tractor-trailer was 58 year old, Lesterville, SD resident, Clate Soukup. The driver of the Ford Focus was 21 year old, Minden resident, Savannah Kahle.
All subjects involved were transported to CHI Health St. Francis in Grand Island. Grand Island Fire & Rescue transported the driver of the Dodge Journey, who is being treated for non-life threatening injuries. The driver of the Ford Focus along with two minor children who were passengers in the Dodge Journey were transported by private party and treated and released for minor injuries. The driver of the Peterbilt semi declined medical treatment at the scene.
Neither alcohol nor illegal drugs are believed to be a factor in the accident. Evidence would suggest that seat belts were in use by some of the parties involved.
The Merrick County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by the Nebraska State Patrol, the Chapman Fire and First Responders, and Grand Island Fire and Rescue.