No serious injuries in thirteen vehicle crash
Updated March 1, 2023
A multi-vehicle accident Feb. 21, 2023 occurred on Hwy 287 at mile marker 37, between Sheridan and Twin Bridges. Zero visibility and icy conditions made for dangerous circumstances and it escalated into one vehicle after another crashing. Law enforcement and EMS arrived on the scene that was thought to have involved seven-ten vehicles, but actually involved thirteen, according to Officer Leigland of the Montana Highway Patrol. “It was quite the mess!” Leigland explained, The extent of the incident could not be seen at first due to poor visibility. “But nobody was seriously injured [and it was] not as bad as it came out over the radio.”
A Twin Bridges school bus driven by Gail Banks was also on the scene but was not involved or hit in any way. There were children on the bus and Banks said they "had a safety talk before leaving the school...the kids did great". Banks was driving slow enough to maneuver to the side of the road and remained out of harm's way, though she did witness other vehicles being struck. A man and his two children were struck and their vehicle was left disabled. Banks was familiar with the gentleman and his children so felt comfortable bringing them on the bus to stay warm. He was taken to the hospital via ambulance.
Banks stated that the Madison County Sheriff's Dept. escorted her bus and the children to the Ruby Valley Medical Center (RVMC) to "wait in the lobby". This information went out over the scanners and some were led to rumors that the children had to go to the hospital due to injuries, which was not the case. The school bus was never struck or involved in the incident and all children were picked up and brought home. On the way to the RVMC's lobby, Valley Assembly Church in Sheridan stepped up and took stranded people, including the kids in. Pizza, beverages and treats were donated but it is unknown by who.
According to Christine Keltner, Madison County Sheriff’s Office administrative assistant, those that suffered property loss from the collision may contact her at MCSO. She will assist with taking information.
The community has expressed its gratitude for the first responders, bus drivers and volunteers for assisting those affected by the multi-vehicle crash