Four-vehicle accident

TRAFFIC WAS BACKED up for an hour on Highway 275 near Pilger on Friday following a four-vehicle accident. Law enforcement said it was luck that nobody was injured.

PILGER — A combination of farm equipment, a turning vehicle and a bridge could have resulted in much more serious conditions for those involved in a four-vehicle accident on Friday.

Stanton County Sheriff Mike Unger reported that at about 4:15 p.m. on Friday, his department investigated a four-vehicle accident about a mile west of Pilger on Highway 275.

The accident occurred when an eastbound pickup driven by Kellen Johnson, 21, rural Norfolk, was passing a piece of farm equipment when he encountered several vehicles stopped on Highway 275 near the Humbug Bridge for a vehicles turning left.

Johnson lost control of his pickup and sideswiped a westbound semi-trailer and then struck a cargo van, Unger said, and the van was pushed into a second stopped pickup and into the bridge.

The driver of the van, Pamalee Veldhuizen, 63, Sioux City, Iowa, Johnson and a passenger in his pickup were all treated at the scene by Pilger Fire and Rescue.

The other two drivers were not injured and seatbelts and airbags did deploy in both the Johnson and Veldhuizen vehicles, lessening any injuries. Speed and inattention by Johnson are considered contributing factors to the cause of the accident, the sheriff said.

The wreckage blocked Highway 275 for just over an hour as the scene was investigated and cleared. Stanton County Emergency Management assisted with traffic control.

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