Butler Co. Sheriff: Deputy in crash ‘lucky to be alive’

By Emily Griffin
KWCH – April 13, 2015

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A Butler County Sheriff’s Deputy is recovering at home Sunday after the patrol car he was in was hit nearly head on Saturday evening near Towanda.

The accident happened just after 6:00 Saturday evening on Highway 254.

The deputy was stopped in his patrol car, waiting to turn, when a truck coming the other way crossed over the median and struck his car near the front, right side.

“I think he just held on tight, applied the brake and was able to live through the impact,” explained Butler County Sheriff Kelly Herzet. “I’m impressed with the way the car held up being hit at highway speeds which is 65 to 70 miles per hour.”

The deputy was taken to Wesley Medical Center for a checkup but was released later that night. He’s now recovering at home.

Sheriff Herzet said this serves as a good reminder of how important it is for the department and county to provide their deputies with good, safe patrol vehicles.

“That’s what’s important to me as the sheriff is that we put good cars underneath these deputies that are out 365 days a year, 24 hours a day,” Sheriff Herzet said. “It’s a fear for the sheriff and probably other chief’s of police and other sheriffs that this kind of stuff can happen.”

Most of the deputies drive Dodge Chargers. The one involved in the wreck was a 2013 Dodge Charger with nearly 30,000 miles on it. Each patrol vehicle is typically replaced every four years.

Sheriff Herzet said so far the cars have been great for his deputies and every year, he pushes to continue buying more cars so they can replace ones that are worn out.

“We’re going to live to fight the fight and have another day and the deputy will be back to work soon.,” he added. “He’s a tough young man.”

The Kansas Highway Patrol is continuing to investigate the cause of the accident and why the truck crossed over the center median.

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