One fatality reported in two serious one-vehicle accidents Saturday

Sunday, June 18, 2017

A pair of serious one-vehicle accidents Saturday in Putnam County are still under investigation but authorities have confirmed that one of the weekend crashes involved a fatality.

No names have yet been released by the Putnam County Sheriff's Department, whose officers worked both accidents, which ironically occurred almost simultaneously just before 9 p.m.

Pickup truck occupied by five strikes a tree along West Walnut Street Road Saturday west of Greencastle.

The fatality was reported in an accident occurring west of Brick Chapel on County Road 250 North, just east of County Road 400 West. Both occupants of the vehicle were reportedly ejected and the victim was described at this time only as a 24-year-old male.

The vehicle was reported to be traveling at a high rate of speed on CR 250 North before jumping a crest in the roadway, which caused the driver to lose control of the vehicle. The vehicle reportedly rolled over several times before coming to rest 200 yards later.

StatFlight helicopter lands near West Walnut Street to transport seriously injured patient in one-vehicle accident on Saturday.

Meanwhile, another serious one-vehicle accident occurred at 8:54 p.m. Saturday near the entrance to the DePauw University Nature Park, just west of Greencastle on County Road 125 South, West Walnut Street Road and sent four persons to the hospital.

The 2008 Ford F-350 extended cab pickup truck involved in that accident was reportedly occupied by four persons and two dogs.

Two medical helicopters were called to the scene to transport the female driver and a rear passenger after they were extricated by Greencastle firefighters.

The victims necessitating helicopters both sustained life-threatening injuries, Sgt. Kyle Gibbons told the Banner Graphic. The driver was still being listed in critical condition at mid-day Sunday, he said.

Meanwhile, two other passengers in the truck suffered non-life-threatening injuries, Sgt. Gibbons said, and were taken via ambulance to Putnam County Hospital, where it was later decided that a third victim needed to be flown to an Indianapolis hospital because of a painful pelvic injury.

The accident occurred as the eastbound truck reportedly left the roadway on the south side of West Walnut, west of the nature park entrance.

Sgt. Gibbons said markings in the grass indicated the truck went off the road for approximately 50 yards before making almost head-on impact with a large tree.

Other markings indicated the driver tried to maneuver the truck back onto the pavement but could not clear the elevated edge of the concrete.

Gibbons said the truck actually clipped another tree before striking the larger tree.

"They actually hit two trees," he said, suggesting that the first impact "slowed the truck down and might have saved all of their lives."

"We had people who heard the accident and came outside," the deputy said, "and we had people who observed the accident, so it's pretty cut-and-dried at this point how it happened."

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