4 helicopters dispatched to Wis. highway crash involving over a dozen patients
Multiple departments responded to a crash in Barron County that killed two people and critically injured three
By Paul Walsh
BARRON COUNTY, Wis. — Two people were killed and three others were critically injured in a collision on a western Wisconsin highway involving a van with 10 people inside and a car with four occupants, officials in Barron County said.
The crash occurred at about 5:50 a.m. Monday north of Ridgeland on Hwy. 25 at County Road A, the Sheriff's Office said.
All of the other people in the two vehicles were taken to nearby hospitals with injuries from minor to serious, according to the Sheriff's Office. The ages of the passengers in the van ranged from 8 to 54, while the ages of the people in the car ranged from 13 to 17.
Given the number of victims, many agencies and emergency vehicles responded to the scene. They included the Barron and Dunn county sheriff's offices, the State Patrol, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, three fire departments, eight ground ambulance services, and two air ambulance services that sent in four helicopters.
According to the Sheriff's Office:
The van was heading north on Hwy. 25 and was struck by the car traveling west on County Road A.
A 54-year-old man in the van and a 13-year-old boy in the car passed away from injuries sustained in the accident. The driver of the van, a 54-year-old male, and two 17-year-old boys from the car were taken by air ambulance to a hospital in critical condition.
After the van caught fire, a deputy suffered smoke inhalation while "she was helping get people out of van and away from the grass that had started on fire," Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald said,
The highway was closed for four hours to allow emergency responders to tend to the vehicles' occupants and get the wreckage cleared.