A woman is dead after a crash just west of Plover Wednesday afternoon.
Portage County Sheriff’s Department Sergeant Nicki Lukas says the crash happened as students were getting off the school bus on this four-lane high speed expressway. “A westbound school bus was unloading students along the right shoulder. While the three students were exiting the bus, a westbound passenger car driven by a 56-year-old female from Wisconsin Rapids was stopped, or nearly stopped, in the left lane. That’s when a westbound pickup truck driven by a 25 year old male from Wisconsin Rapids crashed into the rear of the passenger car, sending it into the median.”
Bystanders and the mother of the three kids getting off the bus rushed to try and help the woman in the car. Lukas says the Plover Fire Department worked quickly to free her. “The female did have to be extricated from the vehicle by rescue personnel. She was transported to St. Mike’s (St. Michael’s Hospital in Stevens Point), and there, she was pronounced deceased.”
The driver of the pickup was not injured, and none of the school bus riders was injured. There were also no passengers in the car or the truck.
Lukas says drivers need to pay attention, especially when school busses are on the roads. “Beware of school busses. Slow down. You never know if they’re starting or stopping. Beware where there’s children.”
The left lane of westbound Sth 54 was closed for nearly three hours while crews conducted their investigation and cleared the scene.
The crash remains under investigation by the Portage County Sheriff’s Office Technical Crash Investigation Team.
The Plover Fire Department, Plover Police Department, Portage County Ambulance Service, Plover EMS, Portage County Traffic Incident Management Team and the Portage County Coroner’s Office all assisted.
The name of the woman is being withheld until her family has been notified.