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home : news : county/state news August 16, 2017

8/13/2017 11:04:00 AM
One killed, several injured in wrong-way crash on Highway 51
By River News Staff

One person was killed and several Rhinelander area residents suffered minor injuries Saturday morning after a car traveling in the wrong lane of U.S. Highway 51 struck a Lamers motor coach head-on.

According to the Lincoln County sheriff's office, a call came in at approximately 2:59 a.m. reporting a wrong way driver on U.S. Highway 51 in the area of County Road Q in the Town of Scott. Within seconds of the first report, an additional 911 call came in reporting a vehicle had struck a bus traveling northbound on U.S. Hwy 51.

"Deputies from Lincoln County were on the scene within minutes of the crash and found a passenger car traveling south in the northbound lane had struck a motor coach bus from Lamers Bus Lines head on," the sheriff's office press release states. "The driver of the passenger car, a 26-year-old Wausau man, was fatally injured in the crash and was pronounced dead on the scene. The 29 passengers on the bus were from the Rhinelander area and were returning from the Milwaukee Brewers game. Several passengers complained of minor injuries but refused medical treatment. One passenger was transported to Ministry Good Samaritan Health Center where she was treated and released."

Highway 51 was closed for over five hours. Deputies and troopers from the Wisconsin State Patrol, along with staff members of the Wisconsin DOT and Lincoln County Highway Department, established and maintained a detour throughout the road closure, the release states.

Additional agencies that responded to the scene or relocated to enhance service coverage included the Merrill and Pine River Fire Departments along with Tomahawk EMS and Wausau Fire Department, Marathon County Sheriff's Office and the Wisconsin State Patrol.

"It is not known at this time if alcohol was a factor with the passenger car driver," the release states. "Standard testing will be performed on both drivers."

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