Iowa State Patrol Car Totaled By Distracted Driver
A Monday morning accident in Jasper County claimed the life of a 50-year-old man and another major accident followed, involving an Iowa State Patrol car.
The Des Moines Register says Rex Lynn Chickering of Prairie City rear-ended a Ford F-150 that was pulling farm machinery, just after 8 a.m. Monday. Authorities believe the sun may have impeded Chickering's eyesight. His vehicle careened into the ditch, where it burst into flames. He was pronounced dead at the scene, just north of Monroe, on Highway 163. A 53-year-old man driving the slow-moving truck was transported to an area hospital.
More than an hour later, Iowa State troopers were providing traffic control when a semi-truck hit and totaled an Iowa State Patrol car.
Nathan Ludwig, Iowa State Patrol Sergeant, told KCCI,
As (the trooper) looked back, he could see the semitruck driver with his right tires driving on the right side of the roadway, and what he heard was the rumble strips.
We don't know why this happened or what they were doing, but this is not a blind corner. This is not at the crest of a hill. This is wide-open Iowa roadway.
We just shake our heads. It just gets old repeating this message of putting your phone down and paying attention.
Thankfully, the trooper wasn't in the vehicle when the crash occurred. Neither the trooper or the driver of the semi were injured. However, Ludwig expects the semi driver to be charged with distracted driving.