EMERGENCY CREWS WERE busy during the Christmas holiday as weather related accidents dotted the landscape.
This head-on collision occurred about 10:30 a.m. on Friday, Dec. 24, on U. S. Route 51 south of Assumption. Five people, including a child, were taken to Pana Community Hospital by Pana Ambulance. The child was transferred to Memorial Medical Center in Springfield.
Two-year-old Waylon Thompson, Pana, is listed in fair condition in Children’s Hospital of Illinois in Peoria as of presstime today, Monday, Dec. 27.
(Pana FD Photo)
Emergency responders were kept busy with accidents during the holiday weekend, mostly caused by slick and icy roadways in the area from the five inches of snow deposited on the Pana area.
The most serious accident occurred at 10:36 a.m., Friday, Dec. 24, on U. S. 51 north of Pana. Five people were reportedly taken to Pana Community Hospital following the head-on collision of two vehicles. One of the injured, 6-year-old Waylon M. Thompson, Pana, was transported to Memorial Medical Center in Springfield in serious condition following treatment at PCH. He was later transferred to Children’s Hospital of Illinois in Peoria, where he is listed in fair condition at presstime today, Monday, Dec. 27.
According to the report by the Christian County Sheriff’s Office, Thompson was a passenger in a 1997 Mercury Sable G, driven by Megan M. Klespitz, 25, 512 N. Walnut St., Pana. The car was northbound on Route 51, a quarter-mile north of 700N Rd., about 4 1/2 miles north of the Rt. 51 junction with Rt. 16. Klespitz told deputies her car started to slide into the southbound lane and into the path of a 2003 Pontiac Montana van, driven by Deeanna R. Stalets, 40, rural Pana. Klespitz said Stalets attempted to avoid the accident, but could not.
Pana and Assumption ambulances transported both drivers to Pana Community Hospital as well. Also transported was Hayden T. Klespitz, 14, a passenger in the Klespitz auto. Another passenger, two-year-old Jacelynn M. Klespitz, was released from the accident site to her grandmother as requested by Mrs. Klespitz, Pana Fire Chief and EMS Director, Rod Bland, reported.
Bland said the accident was first reported to Pana authorities. However, it was discovered the accident was in the territory covered by the Assumption Fire Department. Bland said Pana handled this accident because at about the same time, Assumption was called to an accident north of Assumption.
The highway was shut down for nearly an hour to protect emergency workers from on-coming traffic. The vehicles were removed from the scene by Morrell Auto Service of Pana.
Later on Christmas Eve, at 3:36 p.m., emergency crews were called to 2000E and 350N Rds. for a roll-over accident.
Bland said Charlene Lebon, Rosamond, had lost control of her car and it overturned after she lost control on the snow covered roads. She was able to crawl out of the vehicle by the time emergency personnel arrived. She was taken to Pana Community Hospital by Pana Ambulance for undisclosed injuries.
The Pana Fire Department and Pana EMS also responded to the wreck.