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NSP investigating after three minors die in crash near Wahoo; searching for third vehicle at scene

Nebraska state patrol
Posted at 10:38 AM, Jul 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-21 22:37:44-04

WAHOO, Neb. (KMTV) — UPDATE:

The Nebraska State Patrol said that it has been able to identify a third vehicle that was at the intersection of Highway 77 and Highway 109 at the time of the crash that claimed the lives of three siblings Tuesday evening. The vehicle was identified as a Ford Escape.

Authorities released the following update:

Following interviews, including those with other witnesses, investigators believe the eastbound Escape had not stopped at the intersection, but had slowed down after noticing the southbound Pontiac Grand Am proceed into the intersection after stopping at the stop sign on Highway 109. The Escape was able to stop in time to avoid a collision, but an eastbound Dodge Ram 3500, traveling in the right lane, collided with the Grand Am. All three occupants of the Grand Am, 18, 11, and 7-year-old siblings from Wahoo, were killed in the crash. The driver of the Escape then noticed several witnesses stop to assist and made sure 911 had been called before departing the scene.

Police said the Ford Escape wasn't a contributing factor to the crash.

The investigation is ongoing.

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Three minors died following a crash Tuesday evening near Wahoo, according to the Nebraska State Patrol (NSP).

Around 7 p.m., Saunders County Sheriff's Deputies asked for assistance from NSP at the scene of the two-vehicle crash. The crash occurred at the intersection of Hwy 77 and Hwy 109, north of Wahoo.

Investigators believe a Pontiac Grand Am, driven by an 18-year-old woman, was traveling southbound on Hwy 109 and stopped at a stop sign at the intersection.

NSP said an unknown, eastbound vehicle then stopped in the left lane of Hwy 77, which has the right of way at that intersection.

The Pontiac then attempted to go through the intersection but was struck by an eastbound Dodge Ram 3500 which was traveling in the right lane of Hwy 77.

The crash caused the Pontiac to roll into the intersection's south ditch.

All three occupants of the Pontiac including the driver, an 11-year-old, and a 7-year-old, all of Wahoo, died at the scene.

NSP said the driver of the Dodge Ram, Tobias Hartung, 40, of Fremont, was uninjured in the crash.

The third, unidentified vehicle that stopped in the left lane of Hwy 77 left the scene.

Investigators want to speak with the driver of that vehicle as a witness to the crash.

Anyone with information about the unidentified vehicle is asked to call NSP at 402-479-4921.

Authorities continue to investigate the crash.

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