Highway Patrol Identifies Victim in Monday Crash; Failed Tire Caused Similar Fatality Two Weeks Ago
Tire failure and not wearing seat belts has claimed the life of a second person on Wyoming roads within two weeks, according to the Wyoming Highway Patrol.
"Remember to maintain safety aspects of the vehicle: tires, brakes, windshield wipers, vehicle signals and lights," patrol Sgt. David Wagener said.
"It's just so sad to see people lose their lives because of equipment failure like that," Wagener said.
Monday, Rosie E. Kline, 23, of Gillette died on Wyoming Highway 259 about 15 miles south of Midwest at 12:53 p.m., Wagener said.
She was driving north in a 1994 Ford F150 pickup when its left front tire failed and separated from the rim, which pulled the truck into the southbound lane and into oncoming traffic, he said.
Darrell Simmons of Gillette was driving south in a Kenworth semi truck, saw the tire separation and tried to avoid hitting Kline's pickup, he said.
"Unfortunately a crash still ensued," he said. "The force from the crash did cause Rosie to be thrown from the vehicle as she was not wearing her seat belt. Unfortunately, she sustained fatal injuries from the crash."
Simmons was not injured.
Two weeks ago, Ken Iden was killed under similar circumstances in a rollover accident about 30 miles east of Buffalo, Wagener said. Tire failure and not wearing his seat belt were contributing factors in his death, he said.
Monday's crash marked the 99th fatality on Wyoming highways compared 57 this time in 2013.
Last year was an anomaly, with a total of 87 fatalities, Wagener said. The five-year average has been about 120, he said.
Fatigued and distracted driving have contributed to the higher numbers this year, Wagener said.
Distracted driving includes talking on the cell phone, texting, and not paying attention to your surroundings, he said.