Harvey County crash killed two teenage boys

By Tim Potter
Wichita Eagle – November 30, 2015

harvey co fire 11292015

Harvey County

Officials released new information Saturday about two weather-related traffic accidents that killed four people in Harvey County and on the Kansas Turnpike near Andover.

Icy road conditions were cited in both accidents.

The Harvey County accident Friday afternoon killed two boys, both between 13 and 14 years old. One boy was from Whitewater, the other from Kingman, said Harvey County sheriff’s Cpl. Tim Boese. He said he couldn’t release their names.

The Kansas Turnpike Authority also provided information about a two-vehicle crash on Friday evening that killed two women on the turnpike near Andover. That accident happened when a southbound truck lost control on ice, “jack knifed” and “went through” the median barrier and struck a northbound car, an accident report said.

In the Harvey County accident, a 35-year-old Whitewater woman driving the small SUV in which the boys were riding. She was taken to Via Christi Hospital St. Francis with serious injuries that were not thought to be life-threatening, Boese said. He said he could not release her name because relatives are still being notified.

The boys and the women are related, Boese said.

Boese gave this account of the accident: The SUV, an Infiniti QX, was going north in the 9800 block of South Eastlake Road, in Harvey County, just north of Sedgwick County. It happened around 2:50 p.m. Friday on a paved road with a 55-mph speed limit in a rural area.

The SUV apparently lost control because of ice, veered into a ditch and rolled into a utility pole.

The force ejected one of the boys, who died at the scene. Fire and EMS worker extricated the other boy from the vehicle, and he was pronounced dead at Newton Medical Center.

The three in the SUV were on their way to a family home, Boese said.

The accident is one of five rollover crashes on Harvey County roads since Friday, Boese said Saturday afternoon. Although some highways in the county were fairly clear Saturday, the county’s other paved and gravel roads “are a sheet of ice,” he said.

“The back roads are terrible right now.”

And he expected driving conditions would get worse “now with it misting again.”

In the turnpike accident, authorities identified the two women who died as Shirley Ann Starr, 65, of Kansas City, Mo., and Arlene Dale Harrison, 60, of Winnipeg, Manitoba. Starr was the driver of one vehicle. Harrison was a passenger in the other vehicle.

The accident also injured four people: three passengers in the 2014 Ford Explorer driven by Starr, including an 11-year-old boy and a 15-year-old girl, also of Kansas City. The boy and girl were in fair condition late Saturday afternoon.

The 66-year-old Winnipeg man driving the other vehicle, a 2001 Ford truck, also was injured. He remained in critical condition late Saturday afternoon.

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