Rollover Accident Leads To Three Hour Search
Shortly before midnight on Monday, February 7, Fairbury Rural Fire and Diller Rescue were dispatched to Harbine, responding to a caller who reported being involved in a single vehicle rollover accident.
The caller said he was trapped in the vehicle and was unable to provide his location. Jefferson County Dispatch originally reported the accident as occurring in an “unknown location” in Harbine because the caller’s cell phone pinged off a communications tower near Harbine.
Jansen Rural Fire was called to assist in the search.
A phone later pinged off a Diller tower and the search area was expanded. A command post was established on Highway 136 in Harbine. The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, Gage County Sheriff’s Office, Plymouth Fire and Rescue and the Nebraska State Patrol participated in the search and rescue.
Approximately three hours after the original call, the accident site was located on 709 Road between 577 and 578 Avenues, four miles west of Diller. The State Patrol had sent a helicopter to assist in the search but the vehicle was located before it arrived.
The occupant was extracted from the vehicle and transported to the hospital.
The caller had told law enforcement that he was a passenger in the vehicle and the driver had fled on foot. Jefferson County Sheriff Nick Georgi told FJN, “However, after the vehicle and trapped occupant was located it was determined that he was the sole occupant of the vehicle and the caller was the driver. The cause of the accident was due to the vehicle losing control and driving into the ditch causing it to overturn.”
Sheriff Georgi also noted, “Alcohol is believed to be a factor in the accident and charges relating to the accident and alcohol violations will be filed once the investigation is complete.”