Wildlife distraction blamed for crash

Ron Burtz
The occupants of two vehicles walked away without serious injuries after a head-on collision in Custer State Park (CSP) which was the result of distracted driving last Wednesday. 
According to Custer County sheriff’s deputy Jeff McGraw, a family from Minnesota was eastbound in a Chevy Suburban at about 4:30 p.m. when they spotted some wildlife along the road about three quarters of a mile east of the park shop. Distracted by the animals, the driver allowed the Suburban to cross over the centerline of the road. 
At that moment, a Michigan woman driving alone in a Jeep was coming from the opposite direction and was unable to avoid hitting the Chevy head- on. 
McGraw said no one was injured in the Suburban, but the Jeep driver was transported to the Custer hospital with a broken wrist. Both vehicles were towed from the scene of the crash.
The driver of the Suburban was cited for careless driving and the family was transported to the State Game Lodge. 
Responding to the incident were South Dakota Highway Patrolman John Nelson, who investigated the collision, deputy Justin Richardson, who assisted with traffic control, two CSP rangers, two trucks from Custer Fire Department and Custer Ambulance Service. 

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