Dangerous road conditions are believed to be the cause of a double-fatality accident near Madison on Saturday evening.
At about 5:20 p.m. Saturday, law enforcement officers and rescue personnel responded to a two-vehicle accident about 2 miles north of Madison on Highway 81, said Madison County Sheriff Todd Volk in a press release.
A southbound Chevy conversion van lost control on black ice, Volk said, and the van slid sideways into the center median and then into the northbound lanes. The van then overturned onto the passenger side and was struck by a northbound Chevy Colorado pickup. The driver of the pickup was transported to the Faith Regional Health Services ER in Norfolk with non-life-threatening injuries and was later released, Volk said.
The driver and front-seat passenger of the van, who are residents of the Grand Island area, were pronounced dead at the scene from injuries sustained from the collision. Both drivers were wearing their seatbelts, Volk said, but the passenger in the van was not.
The names of the deceased won't be released until next of kin have been notified.
Both vehicles are a total loss, and drugs and alcohol are not considered to be a factor in the accident, according to Volk. Highway 81 northbound lanes were closed for about four hours until crews were able to clear the lanes, according to the release.
The Madison County Sheriff’s Office, Nebraska State Patrol and Madison Fire and Rescue responded to the scene.