News From Terre Haute, Indiana

January 16, 2014

VIDEO: Winter weather wallops Valley

Vigo School on 1-hour delay today

The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — Wabash Valley residents woke up Thursday morning to roads with a layer of ice and snow that continued throughout the day and resulted in dangerous road conditions.

More snow and wind chills near zero degrees are expected today.

The Indiana State Police reported six personal injury crashes, 16 property damage crashes, 10 slide-offs (with no damage reported) and two medical emergencies occurred between 6 a.m. and 3 p.m. Thursday.

The busiest sections were on Interstate 70 between mile marker 16 in Vigo County to mile marker 22 in Clay County and from mile marker 23 in Clay County to mile marker 35 in Putnam County, police said.

In northern Vigo County, six young people were injured in a crash that occurred around 7:52 a.m., according to Vigo County Chief Deputy Clark Cottom.

Amber Ramsey, 18, of Terre Haute was driving a Mercury Sable westbound on Devonald Avenue, approaching the stop sign at Rosedale Road, according to the Vigo County Sheriff’s Office. The vehicle was traveling too fast for road conditions, police said, and slid through the stop sign, colliding with a Chevrolet Blazer driven by 17-year-old Brandon Curley of Terre Haute. Curley, who sustained shoulder injuries, was southbound on Rosedale Road, police said.

Ramsey sustained a head injury, police said, and her passenger, a 17-year-old female, sustained hip and head injuries and was in serious condition. The passenger was trapped in the vehicle for some time and was extricated by Otter Creek Fire Department, police said.

Three of the passengers of the Chevrolet Blazer were injured. A 17-year-old had a neck injury, and two 15-year-olds had facial injuries.

Between 9 a.m. and 11a.m., the Vigo County Sheriff’s Office received calls for more than 20 crashes and slide-offs, Cottom said. Three of those crashes resulted in personal injury.

Two accidents — one in the morning and one in the afternoon — involved Vigo County School Corp. buses. Police said no one was injured in the morning crash where a school bus was rear-ended while stopped for the railroad tracks at U.S. 41 and Harlan Drive.

 No one was injured in an after-school accident on Carlisle Road involving a car and a Vigo County School Corp. bus, according to Superintendent Dan Tanoos.

The bus, which was transporting about a dozen students from Dixie Bee Elementary, was stopped to drop off children when a car ran into the back of the bus, Tanoos said.

Children were evaluated at the scene and did not complain of any injuries, Tanoos said, and parents went to the scene to pick up their children.  

The car that hit the bus had extensive front-end damage, Tanoos reported.

Indiana State Police said that at 9:20 a.m., a six-vehicle crash in the westbound lanes of I-70 near the 30.5 mile marker in Putnam County resulted in two serious injuries.

David L. McDonald, 67, of Indianapolis, sustained head and internal injuries and was in critical condition at Methodist Hospital of Indianapolis as of Thursday night, according to Indiana State Police.

The other person injured, Marcelin Akendengue, 51, of Indianapolis, had possible multiple fractures and internal injuries. Akendengue’s condition was stable at Methodist Hospital, police said.

According to the Indiana State Police, westbound traffic had slowed and stopped for multiple slide-offs and a crash, when a westbound tractor-trailer driven by 28-year-old Rajwinder S. Brar of Ontario, Canada, failed to stop and struck the stopped traffic in the rear.

McDonald was driving a 2009 Volkswagen that was forced into the guardrail. During the initial impact with the traffic, one or more of the vehicles struck Akendengue, who was standing on the road outside his stopped 2000 Toyota Camry.

A check of the driver and semitrailer by Indiana State Police Commercial Vehicle Enforcement troopers found no defects with the equipment or driver, police said. The trucking company was Charger Logistics of Mississauga, Ontario and it was hauling zinc oxide. No citations were issued, police said.

According to the Indiana State Police, the crash involved three passenger cars, a large truck pulling a camper and two semitrailer units.

 The westbound lanes were closed for two hours, during which traffic was diverted to US 40, police said.

About half an hour earlier — at 8:50 a.m. — Indiana State Police said they responded to mile marker 49.5 on I-70 in eastern Putnam County for a vehicle rollover crash that ejected the driver.

Darrell Gullett, 49, of Greenwood, was traveling west and lost control on the slick roadway, ultimately rolling over his 2001 Ford van, according to Indiana State Police. Gullett was not wearing a seatbelt and was ejected. He was transported to Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis for back pain and internal injuries, police said.  

A weather system that moved through the area Thursday brought snowfall amounts of about one to two inches, scattered snow showers and wind gusts of around 30 miles per hour.

According to the National Weather Service, scattered snow showers will continue today along with wind chills near zero. Light accumulations are possible on Saturday, the NWS said.

The Vigo County School Corporation is on a one-hour delay for today. There will be no preschool classes today. The school corporation will still have early dismissal today. Early release time for elementary schools is 1:45 p.m. and secondary (middle and high) is 2:30 p.m.