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Accidents injure two near Libby
by Duane Williams, KLCB-KTNY Radio
July 26, 2012

Two Idaho residents were injured in two separate, back to back unrelated crashes on Wednesday afternoon, according to Sgt. Duane Bowers of the Montana Highway Patrol.

At 1:02 pm, emergency responders were sent to mile marker 7 on Pipe Creek Road for a one vehicle motorcycle crash. 61 year old Larry Muegerl from Jerome, Idaho was driving his 2010 Harley Davidson motorcycle northbound when a deer darted into his path. Muegerl immediately locked the rear brake to avoid hitting the deer and promptly lost control of the motorcycle crashing it in the center of the road. Muegerl was transported to St. Johns Hospital for treatment. Fortunately, he was wearing a helmet which reduced his injuries significantly. Alcohol/drug use was not a factor.

At 3:20 pm, responders were called to a one vehicle rollover on Highway #2 at mile marker 45. Brandt Wilson, 34 years old from Bonners Ferry was driving his pickup truck eastbound when he slowly drifted off the right side of the roadway. Wilson immediately responded and over-corrected his steering sharply back to the left which caused his truck to rotate 180 degrees back across both lanes of traffic and into the east ditch. After the vehicle entered the east ditch backwards, it rolled over two full rotations coming to rest on its wheels. Wilson was transported to St. Johns hospital for treatment. Wilson later told responders that he was using his cell phone while driving. Seatbelts were used and alcohol/drug use is not a factor in this crash. Citations are pending.

According to Bowers, vehicle crashes caused by cell phone use, especially texting while driving, are on the rise nationwide. Locally, the driving behavior exhibited by motorist visibly using cell phones is appalling. Many times, distracted drivers exhibit the same driving characteristics of a drunken driver. Some examples are weaving on the roadway to include the opposite lane of traffic, speeding up and slowing down, tailgating, running red lights and stop signs in addition to the increasing number of crashes that seem to occur for no apparent reason. There are a growing number of motorists who are doing the right thing by pulling off the roadway where it is safe to do so then using their cell phones to make or receive a call.

By Duane Williams, KLCB-KTNY Radio, www.todaysbestcountryonline.com e-mail: klcb@frontiernet.net.

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