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Harrison Fatal Crash Involving Livestock Trailers – Panhandle

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Authorities said they were called to a two-vehicle crash involving a livestock trailer.

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Photo courtesy of Nebraska State Patrol

HARRISON, Neb. – Authorities said they were called to a two-vehicle crash involving a livestock trailer.

Nebraska State Patrol said at around 7:25 p.m. Friday, a pickup truck pulling a loaded cattle trailer heading west collided head-on with another pickup truck pulling a loaded cattle trailer heading east.

NSP said the accident happened at Mile 14 on Highway 20, east of Harrison.

Authorities said the westbound vehicle was driven by Ruth Smathers, 67, of Lost Springs, Wyoming. They said the eastbound vehicle was being driven by Nanna Flesch, 42, of Shelby, Montana.

Officials said both drivers were pronounced dead at the scene.

The NSP said Flesch’s three children were also in the vehicle and were seriously injured, with one child thrown from the vehicle.

Authorities said the child who was ejected was airlifted to Western Regional Hospital in Scottsbluff and has since been transferred to a hospital in Denver. The other two children were transported to Chadron Hospital, one has since been transported to a hospital in Rapid City.

Officials said several animals died as a result of the crash because both trailers were loaded.

NSP said Highway 20 was closed for about five hours. NSP was assisted at the scene by the Sioux County Sheriff’s Office, Dawes County Sheriff’s Office, Nebraska Game and Parks and the Harrison Volunteer Fire Department.

The accident is still under investigation.


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