The investigation continues into Sunday’s accident on I-80 near Milford that killed four people and injured two. Seward County Sheriff Joe Yocum has seen accidents like this before and that is why he is against proposals to raise the speed limit on interstates.
Sheriff Yocum says, “It is a horrendous sight to see a vehicle that loses control, goes off the paved surface of the roadway into the median. if it was to hit one of the cross-over’s, it is going to vault and then it is going to crash. At that speed welds do hold together well. When the vehicle rotates and then begins to dynamically change by virtue of the crush factor. Then the vehicle continues to roll and maybe rolls several times.”
Sheriff Yocum says back when the speed limit was 65, law enforcement constantly stopped vehicles that were traveling 80 to 90 mph. Now that the speed limit is 75, drivers are hitting the 100 mph mark and he predicts that will continue to rise if the speed limit is increased.
The investigation also shows that the vehicle that crossed the median was running on a bald, donut spare tire. These tires are designed to use temporarily until you can get to a place to get the regular tire repaired or replaced. Sheriff Yocum says, “We did not find the original tire and rim for that vehicle. We believe at this point the donut was the spare tire and that is what they had on the vehicle that was operated. At this point we can conclude they left from Clinton, Iowa and arrived in Seward County when they did by virtue of that donut being on their vehicle.”
The four people killed in the crash have been identified as 49 year old Susan Seiser, 20 year old Cody Richardson, 20 year old Troy Wanzek and 19 year old Cole Austin. All were passengers in a vehicle driven by 20 year old Madison Selser-Smith who was critically injured. The driver they hit, 75 year old Anna Richert was also critically hurt.