News From Terre Haute, Indiana

September 10, 2013

ORV accident injures two

Staff Report
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — Two Sullivan residents were hospitalized after an off-road vehicle crash in northwest Sullivan County early Sunday.

Jerrad M. Pirtle, 28, and Patricia M. Pierson, 29, both were transported to Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis. Pirtle received head injuries. Pierson reportedly had several broken bones. Both remained hospitalized Monday and were listed in good condition.

Indiana Conservation Officers are investigating the crash, which occurred when the couple’s vehicle overturned on a steep hillside adjacent to County Road 300 North near the intersection of County Road 1025 West in Sullivan County.

A passerby found both Pirtle and Pierson lying near the road and transported them both to Sullivan County Community Hospital. Conservation officers later found the vehicle — a 2012 Polaris Razr side-by-side 4-wheeled off-road vehicle.

“Most side-by-side ORVs are now equipped with seatbelts or safety harnesses to prevent the occupants from being ejected from the ORV,” said officer Shane Cooper. “Using this safety equipment, along with helmets and other approved safety gear, helps to prevent serious injuries if an incident were to occur while riding.”

The incident is still under investigation, and alcohol consumption is believed to have been a contributing factor in the crash, police said.