By Jim Misunas
STAFFORD COUNTY — A semi-tractor driver whose International truck apparently traveled left of the center line died in an early-morning head-on accident with another semi-tractor Friday in Stafford County. The roadway was still closed to traffic Friday afternoon.
Kansas Highway Patrol trooper Trooper Jeff Schawe reports Jeffrey S. Ehlert, 40, of Haysville, died in a two-vehicle accident at 7:33 a.m. Friday on U.S. 281, four miles north of St. John.
The accident report indicated that Ehlhert’s semi clipped a northbound semi-tractor, which flipped over on its side and completely blocked traffic on U.S. 281. Heavy fog was reported Friday morning reducing visibility to less than 300 feet.
“Our first investigation looks like the southbound semi truck went left of center and struck the other semi truck,” Schawe said. “It was extremely foggy this morning.”
Pratt’s James Abel III, 22, the other truck driver, was transported to Stafford County Hospital with injuries. He was driving a 2008 Kenworth semi truck.
Wreckage littered the roadway and U.S. 281 was still closed Friday afternoon while accident crews surveyed the scene.
“There’s still a lot of investigation to do,” Schawe said. “We’re still mapping the scene by the critical accident recontruction team. We expect clean up will last into late afternoon.”
Stafford County deputies, St. John EMS and Rescue 1 from the Stafford County fire department responded to the accident.