Early morning black ice sends two deputies to the hospital

Two Fremont County deputies were injured in two different accidents on Tuesday, Jan. 28. Both were transported to Shenandoah Medical Center for injuries. Their conditions were unknown.

According to the Iowa State Patrol, at about 7:08 a.m.  Fremont County Deputy Andrew Wake was traveling eastbound on County Road J46 (commonly known as Riverton road), west of 390th Avenue en route to the scene of an accident when he lost control due to icy conditions. His 2019 Dodge Charger slid into a ditch, rolled and came to rest upright in the ditch.

Wake, 35, was taken to the Shenandoah Hospital for treatment.

Subsequently, at about 7:51 a.m., Ronald Fritschle, 65, of Nebraska City, Nebraska, was driving his 1990 Buick LeSabre eastbound on County Road J46 approaching the scene of the previous accidents when he lost control of his vehicle. Fritschle’s vehicle slid onto the north shoulder then back onto the roadway toward the south shoulder.

While sliding toward the south shoulder, the left rear of Fritschle’s vehicle struck Fremont County Deputy Austin Richardson, 34, who was standing on the roadway investigating the previous accident.

Fritschle’s vehicle came to rest in the south ditch and Richardson came to rest east of where he was struck on the roadway. Richardson was transported to the Shenandoah Hospital by Shenandoah Rescue for his injuries.

The Fremont County Sheriff’s Department was assisted in investigation of both accidents by the Iowa State Patrol. 

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