Accidents claim multiple lives on U.S. Highway 93

2011-07-03T21:00:00Z 2011-07-04T04:24:54Z Accidents claim multiple lives on U.S. Highway 93By BETSY COHEN - Missoulian Ravalli Republic
July 03, 2011 9:00 pm  • 

Saturday was one of the deadliest days ever on U.S. Highway 93 north and south of Missoula.

Four people died in two separate traffic accidents during the day, one near Hamilton and a triple fatality near Arlee.

According to the Montana Highway Patrol, three people died around 9 p.m. when a northbound 2005 Hyundai drifted into the southbound lane and crashed head-on into a Pontiac.

The driver of the Hyundai, 19-year-old Trevor Olson of Missoula, was killed, along with his passenger and cousin, 14-year-old Tanner Olson, also of Missoula. Neither of the teenagers were wearing seatbelts at the time of the crash.

The driver of the Pontiac, a 22-year-old male from Arlee, was injured in the accident. His 21-year-old female passenger, who was not wearing a seatbelt, was killed.

The other passengers in the Pontiac, a 4-year-old boy and an infant, were also injured; they too were not wearing seatbelts at the time of the accident.

The second deadly crash happened around 6:50 a.m. Saturday near Hamilton, when a 53-year-old Sheridan, Wyo., man lost control of his pickup truck.

The driver, who was headed north, overcorrected and slammed head-on into another pickup truck in the southbound lane.

The Wyoming man, who was not wearing his seatbelt, died in the crash. The 55-year-old Missoula driver of the second truck was wearing his seatbelt, and survived with injuries.

The road was dry at the time of the accident. Neither alcohol nor speed were factors in the crash, according to the Highway Patrol.

Names of the other victims will be released following family notification. Both accidents are under investigation.

Copyright 2015 Ravalli Republic. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(12) Comments

  1. JRBbitterroot
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    JRBbitterroot - July 08, 2011 7:36 pm
    I know live on the Flathead Indian Reservation. I am not trying to profile Native Americans, but all the cars that I see driving around with multiple small children bouncing around, not in car seats or even seat belts are being driven by Native Americans. I even see them at the stop light holding small children on their laps while driving. Law enforcement in the area needs to step up and start ticketing individuals for not properly restraining their children in cars. BUCKLE YOUR KIDS UP!
  2. Lee Enfield
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    Lee Enfield - July 06, 2011 10:09 am
    The thing is, bleeding and death are news, and that's what newspapers are all about, like it or not.

    Do you expect the RR to report that 10,727 houses did not burn down yesterday instead of focusing on the one that did?

    It's fun sometimes to use insulting names like the Ravalli Rag, but I consider myself fortunate to have a local newspaper like the Republic rather than having to rely on a regional news source like the Missoulian.

    And if you want a newspaper to print only obituaries related to deaths in the community - well, that just shows a complete lack of understanding regarding how newspapers function in this country. When the Florence triple murders were committed several years ago, do you think it would have been journalistically responsible for the RR to have simply published three obituaries and ignored all other aspects of that horrible crime?

  3. Skeptic
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    Skeptic - July 06, 2011 8:19 am
    Hey Doug Nation: Do you understand the concept and finances of insurance? ALL individuals under care indemnify the care costs of the insured pool. When any insured person makes an unsafe life choice, ALL other insured persons contribute to the costs of that person's care. Your argument would make sense if the cost of care was borne out of the injured party's personal assets only.
  4. hmmmmm
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    hmmmmm - July 05, 2011 7:34 pm
    I have NO agenda! I am simply sick and tired of the "if it bleeds it leads" mentality that goes on with the Ravalli Rag. If people died, fine... list their obituary.

    I am still ticked off at the headline "Hard Working Man... blah blah blah DUI"

    There is always a spin in this paper. always.
  5. BitterrootKids
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    BitterrootKids - July 05, 2011 4:51 pm
    Isn't it illegal to not have seatbelts on children or infants? Those kids are lucky they didn't die. What are people thinking these days?
  6. Doug Nation
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    Doug Nation - July 05, 2011 4:18 pm
    Choosing not to wear a seat belt, as an adult, is OK only IF you have sufficient health insurance to cover the cost of your treatment should you be involved in an accident. If you do not have sufficient coverage and expect to use public money to pay for your care, it is absolutely the right of the public to demand you wear a seat belt while traveling in a car.

    The health care debate is similar. Only IF you have sufficient means to pay for your health care should you have the right to express your opposition to the current plan. If you do not have sufficient coverage and expect the public to pay for your care, you do not have the right to protest the current health care reform plan.
  7. anothermom
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    anothermom - July 05, 2011 11:56 am
    Seat belts have been tested and proven to save lives and prevent injury. Sorry but I disagree with some of you about adults having the choice. When they are thrown from a accident and have the car roll over their heads, but survive, who pays for the nursing home for the rest of their lives. Yep, tax payers.
    But not having your children properly restrained is unexcusable in my opinion. Carseats are provided for free to low income families thru a variety of organizations. Law enforcement, fire departments, etc have trained people who will help install them correctly. And once the habit of always gettingin a carseat, belted in correctly exist the kids won't cry about getting it in.
  8. Andrew
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    Andrew - July 05, 2011 11:43 am
    I hardly think unpredictably being struck and killed by another motorist is "choosing your fate". That is something that is beyond your control. Not wearing a seatbelt is more like "tempting fate", "taking a gamble". "Choosing your fate" would entail that dying or not dying was entirely within the individuals foreknowledge and control and they still decided to do so. The fact that an element (the other motorist) was beyond their control puts the lie to that metaphor. If someone actually knew the time, date and outcome with 100% certainty I hardly think they would "choose" to take their life and bestow such sadness on their family and friends. It's not like "choosing" what tv show to watch. Anyone who would take this tragedy and turn it into their own personal hobby horse hasn't reflected on the weight of these deaths.
  9. Lee Enfield
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    Lee Enfield - July 05, 2011 10:51 am

    Every story reporting highway fatalities SHOULD absolutely report whether or not the victim was wearing a seatbelt.


    Case in point: me. I am alive today because I was wearing a seatbelt when I was involved in an accident 20 years ago in Wyoming and I have a Seatbelt Survivor's Certificate issued by the Wyoming Highway Patrol to prove it. This document says that, based in the officer's investigation, without the use of my seatbelt, I would have been seriously injured or killed in that roll-over accident.

    Another case in point: I had a dear friend 10 years ago - a hardcore, hardheaded Libertarian - who insisted no one had the right to required him to wear his seatbelt, even though it was the law at the time.

    Guess how he died? That's right. Early one morning driving to work in March, he hit a little patch of ice, lost control of his truck, rolled over and was thrown from the vehicle. Dead at the scene when paramedics arrived. He almost certainly would have survived with only minor injuries if he had been belted in.

    Just a cautionary tale.
  10. Skeptic
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    Skeptic - July 05, 2011 9:00 am
    hmmmm; You seem to have some agenda, but for the life of me I can't understand the point of your rant. As a health professional, I am a staunch advocate of seat belt use, and I often witness the consequences of non-compliance. The NEWS is that some of the unfortunate victims were unrestrained, and that was reported in a matter-of-fact way. There was no sensationalization nor detectable advocacy in the article. Grow a clue yourself.
  11. Bitterroot Billy
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    Bitterroot Billy - July 04, 2011 9:20 am
    When reporting accidents especially when there are fatalities involved it is common these days for for print or other media to include seat belt status in the report. Most of their information comes from the police investigating the accident and the police want the reporters to include the seat belt info in the story.

    If you are an adult and want to drive around without wearing a seat belt that is your choice and I could care less about your own personal stupidity (especially considering the problem we have here in this state with drunk drivers on the road), but not making sure your kids are buckled in makes you a bad parent plain and simple.

  12. hmmmmm
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    hmmmmm - July 03, 2011 9:23 pm
    Must be a short article... you reported every injury and every death complete with their seat belt status. If they died because "they were not wearing their seat belt," then maybe those seat belt laws need to be enforced... or maybe they CHOSE their own fate by not wearing them.

    Grow a clue, Ravalli Republic, and start reporting NEWS instead of sensationalizing a tragic accident. The reporter was not wearing a seat at the time he wrote the story.
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