One Great Bend man died and another was seriously injured when their vehicle collided with a semi which crossed the center line of U.S. 281 as a result of a blown tire in southern Barton County Wednesday afternoon.
According to a report from the Kansas Highway Patrol, at around 3:40 p.m. Wednesday, a 2002 Western Star semi driven by 47-year-old Francisco Martinez-Solano of Bazine was northbound on U.S. 281 about a mile north of the Barton/Stafford County line when, investigation indicates the semi blew a left front steering tire. As a result, the semi crossed the center line, veering into the southbound lane where a 2012 GMC Sierra 3500 pickup hauling a trailer and driven by 59-year-old Gerald A. “Tony” Hinson of Great Bend collided with it.
The semi then continued into the east ditch, rolling onto its side. The GMC also came to rest in the east ditch.
Hinson was pronounced dead at the scene as a result of the collision. A passenger in the GMC, 23-year-old Ryan James Kohman, Great Bend, was transported to University of Kansas Health System - Great Bend Campus with what were believed to be serious injuries. His condition was not available as of Thursday morning.
Martinez-Solano suffered possible minor injuries in the crash, but was treated at the scene and not transported to the hospital.